Elizabeth B. Lester

Standard Name: Lester, Elizabeth B.
EBL was an early-nineteenth-century didactic novelist whose favourite topic is the question of whether it is better to marry or stay single. Most of her fiction considers this and comparable issues of domestic morality, but even within this sphere her characters include both the unconventional and the disreputable. Two characters stand out as boldly portrayed eccentrics or outcasts drawn with great, if melodramatic, power: a female hermit and virago and a male Jew. EBL was probably an Anglican of Evangelical outlook and Quaker sympathies; the social class of her characters rises over the course of her career. As well as novels, she published two novellas and a book of short stories, with a long religious-political essay which may or may not be by her.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Author summary Mrs Ross
The still unidentified novelist Mrs Ross , known only by her surname, published a rush of titles—seven—between 1811 and 1816. Her work is racy, highly-coloured, and heavily moralised. Later works once listed as hers have...
Textual Features Maria Edgeworth
Angelina, generally treated as a descendant of Charlotte Lennox 's Female Quixote, shows just how permeable is the boundary between ME 's juvenile and adult fiction. It warns against influence from the wrong...
Textual Production Elizabeth Meeke
Again publishing in her own name, EM may have launched a fictional debate on marriage with the lengthily-titled Matrimony, The Height of Bliss, or the Extreme of Misery. A Novel, whose titlepage said 1812...
Textual Production Mrs Ross
MR 's six titles published between 1811 and 1816 represent her entire oeuvre since her work has been disentangled by scholar Peter Garside from that of Elizabeth B. Lester . MR was well read, and...
Textual Production Mrs Ross
The rest of the titles ascribed to MR in most recent reference books have been re-assigned, on incontrovertible evidence now discovered in the Longman letter-books, to Elizabeth B. Lester . Lester not only began her...


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Lester, Elizabeth B. Fire-Side Scenes. Longman, 1825.
Lester, Elizabeth B. Hesitation. Longman, 1819.
Lester, Elizabeth B. Tales of the Imagination. Longman, 1820.
Lester, Elizabeth B. The Bachelor and the Married Man. Longman, 1817.
Lester, Elizabeth B. The Physiognomist. Longman, 1818.
Lester, Elizabeth B. The Physiognomist. Haley and Thomas, 1820.
Lester, Elizabeth B. The Quakers. Baldwin, Cradock and Joy, 1817.
Lester, Elizabeth B. The Woman of Genius. Longman, 1822.