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This article is about the novel. For the former Liberal Member of Parliament, see Joseph Andrews (politician).
Joseph Andrews Author(s) Henry Fielding
Original title The History of the Adventures of Joseph Andrews and His Friend, Mr. Abraham Adams
Publication date 1742
Media type print
Preceded by Shamela, or An Apology for the Life of Mrs. Shamela Andrews(1741)
Followed by The Life and Death of Johnathan Wild, the Great (1743)
Joseph Andrews, or The History of the Adventures of Joseph Andrews and of his Friend Mr. Abraham Adams, was the first published full-length novel of the English author and magistrate Henry Fielding, and indeed among the…show more content…
The novel begins with the affable, intrusive narrator outlining the nature of our hero. Joseph Andrews is the brother of Richardson’s Pamela and is of the same rustic parentage and patchy ancestry. At the age of ten years he found himself tending to animals as an apprentice to Sir Thomas Booby. It was in proving his worth as a horseman that he first caught the eye of Sir Thomas’s wife, Lady Booby, who employed him (now seventeen) as her footman.
After the death of Sir Thomas, Joseph finds that his Lady’s affections have redoubled as she offers herself to him in her chamber while on a trip to London. In a scene analogous to many of Pamela’s refusals of Mr B in Richardson’s novel, however, Lady Booby finds that Joseph’sChristian commitment to chastity before marriage is unwavering. After suffering the Lady’s fury, Joseph dispatches a letter to his sister very much typical of Pamela’s anguished missives in her own novel. The Lady calls him once again to her chamber and makes one last withering attempt at seduction before dismissing him from both his job and his lodgings.
With Joseph setting out from London by moonlight, the narrator introduces the reader to the heroine of the novel, Fanny Goodwill. A poor illiterate girl of ‘extraordinary beauty’ (I, xi) now living with a farmer