Books by Jenny Uglow

MR. LEAR by Jenny Uglow
Released: April 17, 2018

"A well-wrought life of an eminent Victorian who merits our broader acquaintance."
"They dined on mince, and slices of quince, Which they ate with a runcible spoon": spirited biography of the often dispirited master of the nonsense rhyme. Read full book review >
IN THESE TIMES by Jenny Uglow
Released: Jan. 20, 2015

"A vivid portrait of citizens who gave priority to day-to-day lives but rarely forgot they were engaged in the greatest war in history."
A fascinating account of how Britons lived through a generation of war. Read full book review >
Released: Jan. 15, 2013

"A writer who knows her subject intimately creates a fully fleshed portrait of an England that would soon vanish with the advent of the railroads."
This elegant biography of a little-known Cumbrian landowner, builder and local daughter captures the rural and industrial changes in Georgian England. Read full book review >
A GAMBLING MAN by Jenny Uglow
Released: Dec. 1, 2009

"Occasionally slow-going, but burbles with personalities and ideas of the Restoration age."
British historian Uglow (Nature's Engraver: A Life of Thomas Bewick, 2007, etc.) attempts to organize the bemusing Stuart Restoration period into tidy compartments. Read full book review >
Released: June 12, 2007

"Another triumph for England's most innovative biographer, and a marvelous treat for fans of Bewick's beguiling work."
A wonderful portrait of the man whose exquisite woodcuts of landscapes and creatures reflected the essence of British rural life. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2002

"A very welcome, highly readable contribution to intellectual history."
A lucid portrait of like-minded if very different Brits who worked, schemed, and conversed the Industrial Revolution into motion. Read full book review >
HOGARTH by Jenny Uglow
Released: Nov. 1, 1997

Striving for the lively ``composed variety'' that Hogarth said characterized his own work, this latest biography fixes the engraver and painter in his rich 18th-century milieu. Uglow, biographer of Elizabeth Gaskell and George Eliot (1987), joins the long procession of Hogarth chroniclers and critics, from the contemporary anecdotes of Hogarth's fellow artist George Vertue to the authoritative three-volume opus of art historian Ronald Paulson. William Hogarth was 18th-century Britain's defining genius, a native artist who combined realism with caricature in representing his times. Steeped in the artist and the era alike, Uglow approaches her subject with enthusiasm and affection, though she enjoys explicating his works more than his character. Hogarth's pugnacious ambition propelled him from a humble, dull apprenticeship as a silver engraver to the most popular printmaker of his day and a turbulent life as an independent artist. His ambition endeared him to the likes of Fielding and David Garrick, but it also lost him placement as a painter in the Hanoverian court and among his more classical peers. Uglow's familiar portrait of this careerist of genius is freely embellished throughout with digressions into the environment and events that inspired him, including the multitudinous London of his ``modern moral subjects,'' the progresses of his harlot and rake; the Foundling Hospital and his groundbreaking portrait of its founder, Captain Thomas Coram; the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745; and the contentious General Election of 1754, wonderfully skewered in Hogarth's Election series. Although he may have overreached himself in later years with his tendentious treatise, The Analysis of Beauty, and his untaken bid at Old Mastery, Sigismonda, he was always a lively and entertaining figure, always bustling and skirmishing with the artistic establishment. Hogarth and his century were never dull, nor is Uglow's expansive, diverting book. (200 b&w illustrations, 14 color plates, not seen) Read full book review >