George Eliot

Bertrand Russell was portrayed as Mr Apollinax by T.S. Eliot, wittering incomprehensibly and laughing ‘like an irresponsible foetus’

Oddballs of English philosophy

25 May 2019 9:00 am

Charles Kay Ogden once proposed that conversations would be conducted more efficiently if participants wore masks. Apart from confirming the…

George Eliot, photographed in 1858

Which writers really deserve to be called ‘outsiders’?

28 October 2017 9:00 am

The women writers Lyndall Gordon presents as brave ‘outsiders’ had easy lives compared with many other struggling authors one can name, says Philip Hensher

Fanny Cornforth’s mouth comes under Kathryn Hughes’s scrutiny. The Pre-Raphaelite muse is seen here in Rossetti’s ‘The Blue Bower’

Why did Darwin grow a beard? And what was George Eliot so keen to hide?

21 January 2017 9:00 am

The fetishisation of the Victorians shows no sign of abating. Over the past 16 years, since the centenary of the…

The beauty of the Star-Spangled Banner

12 November 2016 9:00 am

There was something unexpectedly moving about hearing not just one but several renditions of the somewhat naive and rose-tinted but…

Engrossing, educative and baffling: The JT LeRoy Story reviewed

30 July 2016 9:00 am

JT LeRoy was a teenage hustler who emerged from a childhood of abuse, drug addiction and homelessness to write about…

The question Christianity fails to answer: ‘Who is my neighbour?’

12 December 2015 9:00 am

‘Fine old Christmas,’ wrote George Eliot, ‘with the snowy hair and ruddy face, had done his duty that year in…

Horse racing, Sancerre and escaped lobsters

30 August 2014 9:00 am

A stint in dry dock — the ‘dry’ literally — has one advantage. There is time for lots of long…

Middlemarch: the novel that reads you

15 March 2014 9:00 am

The genesis of The Road to Middlemarch was a fine article in the New Yorker about  Rebecca Mead’s unsuccessful search…

The greatest novel in English – and how to drink it

20 July 2013 9:00 am

Which is the greatest novel in the English language? Let us review the candidates: Clarissa, Pride and Prejudice, Middlemarch, The…