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Arthur Mervyn: Or, Memoirs Of The Year 1793: First And Second Parts
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Arthur Mervyn: Or, Memoirs Of The Year 1793: First And Second Parts

3.36  ·  Rating Details  ·  135 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
Mervyn begins to get sick, and fearing a forced trip to the hospital (a death trap), he decides to hide himself in the old Welbeck mansion. Welbeck leaves Mervyn to die, and Mervyn eventually wanders out into the street and collapses. Mervyn is discovered by Dr. Stevens sitting on a bench. He is suffering from yellow fever, and since Dr. Stevens has pity on him, is invited ...more
Published December 12th 1980 by Kent State University Press (first published 1798)
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Oct 29, 2015 Cheryl rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
After his father's remarriage, young and naive Arthur Mervyn is forced to leave his father's farm and make his own living in the city (Philadelphia). Once there, he runs into alot of bad luck, mainly having to do with the con man Thomas Welbeck. Mervyn, with the help of some good people he meets in the city, tries to right the wrongs done by Welbeck, while trying to better his own education and employment.

There are alot of characters in this novel, and I struggled to keep them all straight. (Mak
Apr 06, 2008 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: CBB fanatics
The only way to ready Arthur Mervyn.

Er ist so eine Art Simplicius Simplicissimus mit einer Prise Felix Krull. Nie weiß man so genau, ob man ihm sein wohlmeinend naives Gutmenschentum abkaufen soll, oder ob er gerade dabei ist, uns über's Ohr zu hauen. Die Rede ist von Arthur Mervyn, dem Romanhelden von Charles Brockden Browns 1799 erschienenen Roman 'Arthur Mervyn oder Die Pest in Philadelphia', einem sehr frühen Stück amerikanischer Literatur.

Ehrlich zugegeben, hatte ich bis vor kurzem noch nie etwas von Charles Brockden Brown
Jan 08, 2009 matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a big fan of Charles Brockden Brown even if his books can sometimes be a tough slog (must-read-twice curlicues of sentences, total implausibility on every level [by today's standards, anyway], etc.). I really enjoy reading all the crazy/horrible/salacious combinations of infanticide/rape/religious maniac/prostitute-type things he tucks into his stories, partially because I didn't think they were supposed to be acknowledged pre-1960's lit, much less pre-1800's lit! It's refreshing to know not ...more
Lauren Albert
My review of Wieland says more about what I think about Brown's work. I wrote my dissertation on his novels. Arthur Mervyn is the strangest of them--and that is saying something! Mervyn--the character-- is truly a mystery wrapped in a riddle inside an enigma. Is he an innocent? A fool? A trickster? It is a puzzle whose pieces will never all come together. Set during a plague year, the book is also a frightening and enlightening look at human behavior in the face of terror. As in Wieland, the boo ...more
James Dorwart
Mar 31, 2011 James Dorwart rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book set in Philadelphia during the epidemic which killed 20% of the population in 1791, written in 1792 by a survivor. The story is about a conman and features the city in an amazing perspective. Not my favorite of his books, though probably the most accessible to most readers.
Mark Stephenson
Oct 24, 2011 Mark Stephenson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Set in 1790's Philadelphia and Baltimore and written in an antique, stately and flowery style, this novel surprised me by being readable, interesting and even touching. Was the Great American Novel already written before the 19th century ever turned?
Dec 02, 2010 Ereck rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Interpolations within interpolations within interpolations. And strains of proto-feminism in early America. Beware of spoilers and unnecessary interpretive work in numerous notes. A great critical edition, but it goes too far in both these regards.
Oct 11, 2015 Amy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Wow this was a tough one to make it through. People get sick in the book, it is a very central theme. However, I had to use Wikipedia to figure out the significance and the plot.
Jen Mcinnes
Not my favorite CBB novel but good in it's own right. Kinda surprised at the ending of it, which is good.
Little hard to get all the way through, but overall good novel (considering the period) :-)
Aug 20, 2007 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Whether you believe him or not, Arthur Mervyn is interesting, though circuitous journey. Heavy CBB.
Joe Johnston
I read this for my honors thesis in college. Bleh.
Aug 25, 2008 Corey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
surprisingly good
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Charles Brockden Brown (January 17, 1771 – February 22, 1810), an American novelist, historian, and editor of the Early National period, is generally regarded by scholars as the most ambitious and accomplished US novelist before James Fenimore Cooper. He is the most frequently studied and republished practitioner of the "early American novel," or the US novel between 1789 and roughly 1820. Althoug ...more
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