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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
H. R. Keller.  The Reader’s Digest of Books.
 
Matrimony
William Edward Norris (1847–1925)
 
Matrimony, by W. E. Norris (1881). Mr. Norris’s third novel is the story of the fortunes of a county family named Gervis, the scene being laid partly in Beachborough, an English county-town, and partly among an aristocratic half-bohemian set in Paris. Mr. Gervis, a brilliant diplomat, marries an Italian woman, by whom he has two children, Claud and Geneviève. His second wife is a Russian, Princes Omanoff, who has already been twice married, and has her own cynical views as to the blessings of matrimony. Mr. Gervis and the Princess maintain separate establishments, but are on friendly terms. When the story opens, Mr. Gervis, with his son Claud, after a long residence abroad, has just returned to England to take possession of a family estate, lately inherited. From this point the true story begins. Its complications arise from the love-affairs of Claud and his beautiful sister, from certain outlived episodes in the life of the Princess, and from the serious effects that spring from the frivolous cause of the Beachborough Club’s reading-room gossip. Nothing is out of the common, yet the elements of disaster and of tragedy are seen to be potential in the everyday lives of the everyday characters. The book abounds in types of character done to the life. Even the callow clubhouse smokers have an individuality of their own; and French dandies, men of letters, gamblers, scoundrels, Russian adventurers, and back-biting ladies of quality, rowdies, and philosophic speculators on the cosmos in general, are each and all as real as the crowd in the street.  1
 
 
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