The Waverley Novels: by Walter Scott - Summary

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      In 1814, Walter Scott completed The Waverley Novels of which he had written seven chapters in 1805 and a few more in 1810 and published it anonymously as Waverley. This story of the Stuart uprising of 1743 was an immediate success. In a sense this novel was as much a geographical as a historical novel and it delighted the public by its pictures of Highlanders and the Highlands. Waverley took the world by storm and it was followed by a series of novels dealing with Scottish life of the recent past Guy Mannering (1815), The Antiquary, Old Mortality (1816), Rob Roy (1817), The Heart of Midlothian (1818), The Bride of Lammermoor, The Lagend of Montrose (1879).

In 1814, Walter Scott completed The Waverley Novels
The Waverley Novels

      In Waverley, Scotts heart was in the Highlands. He contrasted the poetry and chivalry of the Stuart-loving Highlands with the matter of fact concrete good sense in political affairs that characterised the Lowlands. His novels show the strong tide of imagination released by the Romantic movement. The past lived again in his pages. The reading public at last found the author for which it was waiting one who could recreate the past. Beside him the Terror novelists with their gimcrack castles, their theatrical villains and stilted language appeared to be fantastic and absurd.

      The success of the Waverley novels was enormous and Scott was hailed as a great novelist. Scott was a story-teller and his novels were a unique combination of realism and historical insight. His novels were a vast concourse of men and women some of them are historical characters and some are the products of his imagination.

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