TheFemaleHusband

The Female Husband (Laurus Book Society) [電子書籍版]
Henry Fielding

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The female husband: or, the surprising history of Mrs. Mary, alias Mr George Hamilton, who was convicted of having married a young woman of Wells and from her own mouth since her confinement.


As opposed to the middle-class Richardson, Fielding came of a genteel family and enjoyed an excellent education. He was born April 22, 1707, at Sharpham Park in Somerset, and was related to Lady Mary Wortley Montagu and the Earl of Denbigh. In April, 1718, Henry's mother died and his father, Colonel Edmund Fielding, went away to London, leaving the children in the care of his in-laws, the Gould family. A year later Colonel Fielding married an Italian widow and attempted to regain custody of his children from his mother-in-law, Lady Gould. This led to a lengthy law-suit which was finally settled in 1722, granting Lady Gould the custody of her grandchildren and securing their mother's estate for Henry and his sisters.

After attending Eton, Fielding courted a young heiress, Miss Sarah Andrew of Lyme Regis, but failed to persuade her to elope with him. In 1727, his family lost much of their money through the dishonesty of a broker, and the young Fielding found himself in need of an income. Drama was the most lucrative genre of the time, and Fielding took advantage of his London connections, particularly Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, to gain an introduction to theater circles there. His first play, Love in Several Masques, was produced in 1728 at the Drury Lane Theater and published the same year. Despite this promising beginning, however, less than a month later Fielding enrolled at Leyden University, where he was entered in the faculty of letters.

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