Rebecca and Rowena

Hesperus Press

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Rebecca and Rowena is Thackeray's answer to the Victorian craze for medieval themes and saccharine prose.

Shamelessly parodying Sir Walter Scott's vast popular success, a youthful William Makepeace Thackeray wrote a novel loosely based on Scott's Ivanhoe. Irreverently exploring what happened after Scott's novel ended, Rebecca and Rowena takes as its premise Ivanhoe's mistaken marriage to the wrong woman -- 'icy, faultless, prim' Rowena -- and ridiculously reunites the hero with his first love, the Jewess Rebecca. From bawdy and blood-thirsty Richard the Lion-heart, to Wamba, Ivanhoe's Shakespearean Fool, Thackeray's characters come into their own as facetious renditions of hackneyed medieval stereotypes. His is a surreal, parallel universe, stuffed with anachronistic props and starring a host of twelfth-century cynics.

Hilarious, surprising and decidedly contrary, Thackeray's early masterpiece is the warts-and-all alternative to romantic cliches.


Format: Paperback
Year published: 2002

Pages: 90
 Classics; humour.
Imprint: Hesperus Press

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