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Anne of Geierstein (1829) is set in Central Europe in the fifteenth century, but it is a remarkably modern novel, for the central issues are the political instability and violence that arise from the mix of peoples and the fluidity of European boundaries. With Anne of Geierstein Scott concludes the unfinished historical business of Quentin Durward, working on a larger canvas with broader brush-strokes and generally with more sombre colours. The novel illustrates the darkening of Scott's historical vision in the final part of his career. It is also a remarkable manifestation of the way in which the scope of his imaginative vision continued to expand even as his physical powers declined. This new edition is based upon the first edition but is corrected by recovering from the manuscript about 2000 readings lost in some cases by misreadings of what Scott had written, but in many others from the assumption that those who processed Scott's text knew better than he did. This is the first modern critical edition of what was in its day a remarkably successful novel.
J. H. Alexander is Reader Emeritus in English at the University of Aberdeen.
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- ID: 9780748605866
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