Also, don’t read the Wikipedia entry trying to find this out The setting, amidst the high-society spa towns and seaside resorts of the 18th century provides his characters with many opportunities for satirical observations on English life and manners. Semi-entertaining but certainly no page-turner. The whole work is, in the end, a paean to friendship. His introduction into society as a young gentleman often occurs during his socializing at the coffeehouse , a burgeoning social institution, especially in eighteenth century London. It’s an epistolary somethin Given how briefly the best authors dedicated themselves to it, realism exerts far too much influence over our reading habits. The objectives of the travel include both restorative spas most notably Bath and simple sight-seeing. The avaricious sister and aunt was mildly amusing in her desperate attempts to find a husband, any husband!

But there was much pleasure to be found in this inflected story of a family of convenience as they peregrinate around the United Kingdom on a series of unexpected adventures. Dennison, who did the office of her father: There is a map showing the route of the party. I hope someone does an annotated edition to explain all the historical, cultural and political references. Your weary soul can rest easy now. However, towards the end the story began to get very repetitive and boring, so much so I found myself speed reading the last pages or so. I enjoyed the novel. It’s an epistolary something or other, but ‘novel’ doesn’t quite seem to capture it.

The Expedition of Humphry Clinker

So long as he wore trousers that was good enough! It is also the first to capitalise on the idea of multiple perspectives although Christopher Anstey had pioneered the form in his New Bath Guide.

He is taken on by Matthew Bramble and family, while clinjer are traveling toward London, after offending Tabitha and amusing Matthew Bramble. At once he is a noble courtesan, a little rough around the edges, clinkfr still quite a catch for a status-conscious dame.

It’s a deliciously fun novel, a vivid picture of England and Scotland at the time, and an excellent insight into how the times were changing toward modernity even then.


Tobias George Smollett was born in Dalquhurn, now part of Renton, Scotland, to a prosperous family and educated at the University of Glasgow, where he studied cclinker be a physician. The best analogue, though, might be: One such issue revolves around the strange and exotic Lismahago and his summary of his adventures amongst the Miami tribes of North America. There’s no doubt this book is well-written, but it’s predominantly boring to me, at least.

Feb 28, k. Thank You for Your Contribution! When they first meet, Clinker is impoverished and barely covered by his rags. The other travelers are Matt’s sister, a desperate spinster, his pretty but frivolous niece, the nieces scholarly brother, a handmaiden, and Humphry Clinker, Bramble’s steward, and for the life expedituon me I don’t know why he is also the title.

Views Read Edit View history. Beware, when you pick up a Smollett, for here there is no character development, no tight plot, no interest–despite what the back of the book says–in faithfully depicting society. As a comic foil to Tabitha Bramble, Win Jenkins shares many of her misspellings and malapropisms but demonstrates considerably more common sense and intuition in her observation of the family. This one is the only one starting with The Expedition.

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Humphry Clinker

Lord Byron, British Romantic poet and satirist whose poetry and personality captured the imagination…. Tobias Smollet’s uproarious satire of 18th-century life, dramatised by Yvonne Antrobus. It was difficult at the beginning due to sumary daunting number of footnotes one is required to go through to make sense of vocabulary in use then that has long disappeared from the language.

The splenetic patriarch, Matthew Bramble, visits various natural spas to alleviate his health problems, and he corresponds primarily with his physician, Dr. His accounts help provide insight into Matthew Bramble’s character. I was also blow away lpot how beautifully constructed this non-linear view of the “vanity fair” to use Mr.

In this way, Smollett makes it easy to regard this group of people as nuanced individuals, even as they serve repeatedly to illustrate opposite sides of the many philosophical ideas Smollett treats.


Unfortunately, our editorial approach may not be able to accommodate all contributions. Along the way they encounter many odd xummary, and as they write home to friends about their adventures, the reader gets an agreeable picture of the action from several points-of-view. Thanks for telling climker about the problem. In other words, to all the one and two star reviewers: Although the primary motivation for the expedition is to restore the health of the gouty Matthew Bramble, each member of the family uses the excursion to achieve their ends.

But the 17th Century novel depicts it as it more likely was, with is heat, travel-sickness from the jolts, and frequent breakdowns and overturns in the terrible roads, with highwaymen everywhere as there was no real law exxpedition order on the highway.

Expeditkon by Tobias Smollett. Humphrey Clinker himself came in partway through the book; a poor misbegotten wretch that the iscrasible but kind hearted Mr Bramble took on as a servant. It was followed by The Adventures of Peregrine Pickle in However, expeditoin through the book is a continuing narrative of intrigues, misunderstandings, and mysterious personages of dubious intentions, all of which resolve themselves in a glorious final 30 pages, reminding me inescapably of Shakespeare’s “All’s Well that Ends Well”.

Now having gotten one epistolary novel under my belt, I am looking forward to getting more into this field. It still remains true, of course, that their points of view about the events in question can be very disparate from each other. The Theme of Colonialism. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.