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A foundling of mysterious parentage brought up by Mr. Allworthy on his country estate, Tom Jones is deeply in love with the seemingly unattainable Sophia Western, the beautiful daughter of the neighboring squire--though he sometimes succumbs to the charms of the local girls. When Tom is banished to make his own fortune and Sophia follows him to London to escape an arranged marriage, the adventure begins. A vivid Hogarthian panorama of eighteenth-century life, spiced with danger and intrigue, bawdy exuberance and good-natured authorial interjections, Tom Jones is one of the greatest and most ambitious comic novels in English literature.
The lusty, rib-tickling, colorful and dramatic revelation of low and high life in eighteenth-century England.
Joseph Andrews refuses Lady Booby's advances, she discharges him, and Joseph -- in the company of his old tutor, Parson Adams (one of the great comic figures of literature) -- sets out from London to visit his sweetheart, Fanny. Along the way, the two travelers meet with a series of adventures -- some hilarious, some heartstopping -- in which through their own innocence and honesty they expose the hypocrisy and affectation of others. Joseph Andrews started out as a parody of Richardson's Pamela, but soon left that purpose behind and now is regarded as the first English realistic novel.
Joseph Andrews, Henry Fielding's first full-length novel, depicts the many colourful and often hilarious adventures of a comically chaste servant. After being sacked for spurning the lascivious Lady Booby, Joseph takes to the road, accompanied by his beloved Fanny Goodwill, a much-put-upon foundling girl, and Parson Adams, a man often duped and humiliated, but still a model of Christian charity. In the boisterous short tale Shamela, a brilliant parody of Richardson's Pamela, the spirited and sexually honest heroine uses coyness and mock modesty to catch herself a rich husband. Together these works anticipate Fielding's great comic epic Tom Jones, with their amiable good humour and pointed social satire.
H. Fielding wrote Joseph Andrews (1742) and Shamela (1741) in response to Samuel Richardson's Pamela (1740), where Shamela is a bawdy travesty. Joseph Andrews begins as a satire, but outgrows its origins. Its roots lie in Cervantes and Marivaux.
Tom, a foundling, is discovered one evening by the benevolent Squire Allworthy and his sister Bridget and brought up as a son in their household; when his sexual escapades and general misbehavior lead them to banish him, he sets out in search of both his fortune and his true identity. Amorous, high-spirited, and filled with what Fielding called "the glorious lust of doing good," but with a tendency toward dissolution, Tom Jones is one of the first characters in English fiction whose human virtues and vices are realistically depicted. This edition is set from the text of the Wesleyan Edition of the Works of Henry Fielding.
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