Instantly popular upon its initial publication in 1863, The Water Babies is at once a bewitching childhood fantasy and a skillfully woven moral allegory. Tom, a young chimney sweep, escapes his horrendous job and his cruel boss, Grimes, when fairies plunge him into a fantastical world under the sea. As he meets and befriends his fellow water babies, as well as all sorts of sea creatures, he begins to learn some valuable lessons.
Much in demand by scholars, this authoritative new edition?featuring the Victorian illustrations from early editions?will charm children and adults alike.
''Everyone who has an interest in the exuberant, eclectic, ecological, and erotic aspects of Victorian literature should know this book . . . [A] delightful and important work of Victorian children's literature.'' -- Naomi Wood, Associate Professor of English, Kansas State University
"A new and unabridged edition of The Water-Babies is an unlooked-for pleasure. Everyone who has an interest in the exuberant, eclectic, ecological, and erotic aspects of Victorian literature should know this book. When combined with the definitive illustrations by Linley Sambourne and a wealth of explanatory notes, appendices, and other critical tools, this edition becomes indispensable. We all owe a debt of gratitude to Richard Kelly and to Broadview Press for editing and re-issuing this delightful and important work of Victorian children's literature." -- Naomi Wood
"This is a long overdue, thoroughly detailed, and informative edition of Kingsley's classic Victorian children's tale. Though The Water-Babies has had great popular success since first publication, especially in the UK, it has frequently been read in abbreviated versions with many of Kingsley's often lengthy asides on politics, religion, education, and other pressing topics of the day omitted. This Broadview edition, following closely the first book text of 1863, includes all of Kingsley's fascinating diversions. The work is greatly enhanced by Professor Kelly's many scholarly appendices and numerous instructive annotations on the text. The result is an excellent edition that renders this intriguing classic much more amenable to the modern reader." -- Brendan A. Rapple
About the Author
Charles Kingsley (12 June 1819 – 23 January 1875) was a priest of the Church of England, a university professor, historian and novelist. He is particularly associated with the West Country and northeast Hampshire. He was a friend and correspondent with Charles Darwin.
Charles Kingsley's novel Westward Ho! led to the founding of a town by the same name (the only place name in England which contains an exclamation mark) and inspired the construction of the Bideford, Westward Ho! and Appledore Railway. A hotel in Westward Ho! was named for him and it was opened by him.
A hotel opened in 1897 in Bloomsbury, London, was named after Kingsley. The hotel was founded by teetotallers who admired Kingsley for his political views and his ideas on social reform. It still exists, and is now known as The Kingsley by Thistle.
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