John Ruskin (Paperback)

The Later Years

By Tim Hilton

Yale University Press, 9780300194852, 688pp.

Publication Date: June 1, 2000

Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (9/10/1985)
Paperback (9/1/2002)
Hardcover (4/10/2000)

List Price: 63.00*
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Description

John Ruskin, one of the greatest writers and thinkers of the nineteenth century, was also one of the most prolific. Not only did he publish some 250 works, but he also wrote lectures, diaries, and thousands of letters that have not been published. This book—the second and final volume of Tim Hilton’s acclaimed biography of Ruskin, which is published on the centenary of Ruskin’s death—draws on the original source material to give a moving account of the life of this brilliant and creative man.

The book begins in 1859, when Ruskin, a famous author with a disastrous marriage behind him, is living with his parents, writing and traveling, and tutoring—among other pupils—Rose La Touche, a girl of ten, with whom he slowly falls in love. Hilton recounts how this relationship developed into one of the saddest love affairs of literary history, ending in tragedy in 1875. Thereafter, says Hilton, Ruskin’s life was punctuated by bouts of insanity and despair that culminated in total breakdown for the last ten years of his life. During these years, however, his intellect and imagination reached new heights, as he produced Praeterita and most of Fors Clavigera, the series of monthly letters to British workers. Hilton’s magisterial narrative follows Ruskin through this period and shows that he was the most eloquent and radical of all the great Victorian writers.