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August 28 , 2008

The Bishop's Wife


In THE BISHOP’S WIFE we see William Pitt the Younger through the eyes of Elizabeth, the wife of Bishop Pretyman, who was Pitt’s tutor and one of his closest friends. We see how funny and friendly Pitt was in private. As Elizabeth’s story unfolds we encounter a breath taking gallery of eighteenth century leading lights, both social and political: William Wilberforce, Henry Dundas, 1st Viscount Melville, George Canning, George Castlereagh, Sir John Moore, and, not least, Lord Horatio Nelson and the Duke of Wellington. We see the King and Queen, the poet William Wordsworth and painter J. M. W Turner, all in a vivid social and political setting as England faces turbulent times, and as she defeats Napoleon to gain control of the seas and consolidate her empire.

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