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Uncle Silas / by J. Sheridan Le Fanu ; with an introduction and edited by Christine Longford

J. Sheridan Le Fanu

RA Collection: Book

Record number




Harmdonsworth; New York: Penguin Books, 1940

Physical Description

191 p. ; 18 cm. (pbk).

Series Title

Penguin books. Mystery & crime: 279

General Note

An abridged version


Introduction -- I. Austin Ruthyn, of Knowl, and his daughters -- II. Madame de la Rougierre -- III. Church Scarsdale and Monica Knollys -- IV. Lady Knollys removes a coverlet -- V. Angry words -- VI. An adventure -- VII. A midnight visitor -- VIII. Austin Ruthyn sets out on his journey -- IX. The opening of the will -- X. The story of Uncle Silas -- XI. Doctor Bryerly reappears -- XII. Batram-Haugh -- XIII. The Windmill Wood -- XIV. We visit a room in the second storey -- XV. Doctor Bryerly emerges -- XVI. Cousin Monica and Uncle Silas meet -- XVII. In which I make another cousin’s acquaintance -- XVIII. Elverston and its people -- XIX. News at Bartram Gate -- XX. A chapter-full of lovers -- XXI. Doctor Bryerly again -- XXII. An apparition -- XXIII. Sarah Matilda comes to light -- XXIV. An odd proposal -- XX. I conspire -- XXVI. A sudden departure -- XXVII. Our bed-chamber -- XXVIII. The hour of death -- Conclusion

Summary Note

Frist published as Uncle Silas: a tale of Bartram-Haugh (London: Richard Bentley, 1964)

Like many of Le Fanu's novels, Uncle Silas grew out of an earlier short story, in this case A Passage in the Secret History of an Irish Countess (1839), which he also published as The Murdered Cousin in the collection Ghost Stories and Tales of Mystery (1851). While this earlier story was set in Ireland, the novel's action takes place in Derbyshire. It was first serialized in the Dublin University Magazine in 1864, under the title Maud Ruthyn and Uncle Silas, and then appeared in December of the same year as a three-volume novel from the London publisher Richard Bentley. Several changes were made from the serialization to the volume edition, such as resolving the inconsistencies of names.


Inscribed in black ink on the inside of the front cover: Charles Stewart 1941

Copy Note

There are numerous annotations in pencil, mostly comprising crosses and chapter headings in the margins and crossed-out text. The front cover also carries annotations in black ink.


Charles W. Stewart, previous owner, donor
Christine Longford, editor, contributor
Penguin Books, publisher
Wyman and Sons (London), printer