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July 24 , 2008

The Lady of Blossholme


Dodo Collections brings you another classic from H. Rider Haggard, ‘The Lady of Blossholme’
The story takes place in England during the reign of Henry VIII, in the year 1536. This was the period when King Henry was rebelling against Pope Clement VII, and when many Englishmen in the north, and many clergymen, were consequently rebelling against Henry, in the so-called Pilgrimage of Grace. To raise needed funds for this rebellion against the king, the Spanish abbot Clement Maldon murders Cicely Foterell’s father and tries to claim all the family’s lands and jewels. And what a hell this religious zealot puts poor Cicely through. She and her foster mother, Emlyn, are incarcerated in a nunnery and later tried as witches. Cicely’s husband is conked on the head and shipped overseas, and a murderous midwife is sent to do away with Cicely’s new baby. Before all can be put to rights, and our heroine and her husband are reunited, Cicely and her few friends must seek an audience with no less personages than Thomas Cromwell and King Henry themselves.
Sir Henry Rider Haggard was an English writer of adventure novels set in exotic locations, predominantly Africa, and the creator of the Lost World literary genre. His stories, situated at the lighter end of the scale of Victorian literature, continue to be popular and influential. He was also involved in agricultural reform and improvement in the British Empire.
His breakout novel was King Solomon’s Mines (1885), which was to be the first in a series telling of the multitudinous adventures of its protagonist, Allan Quatermain.
Haggard was made a Knight Bachelor in 1912 and a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1919. He stood unsuccessfully for Parliament as a Conservative candidate for the Eastern division of Norfolk in 1895. The locality of Rider, British Columbia, was named in his memory.
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