Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Headlong Hall” as Want to Read:
Headlong Hall
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Headlong Hall

3.4  ·  Rating details ·  112 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Excerpt: ...mould, and covering the whole with an elegant stratum of turf. Squire Headlong caught with avidity at this suggestion; and, as he had always a store of gunpowder in the house, for the accommodation of himself and his shooting visitors, and for the supply of a small battery of cannon, which he kept for his private amusement, he insisted on commencing operations ...more
Paperback, 86 pages
Published November 3rd 2006 by Hard Press (first published 1816)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Headlong Hall, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Headlong Hall

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Rating details
Sort: Default
RE-VISIT 2016 via R4x HUZZAH!

Description: Winter, 1815: Harry Headlong, like all Welsh squires, is fond of shooting, hunting and drinking. But he becomes seized with a passion to form the acquaintance of philosophers and dilettanti.

Narrated by Sir Michael Hordern. Starring Daniel Massey as Escot, Ronald Lacey as Foster, John Grillo as Jenkison, John Horsley as Cranium and William Simons as Headlong.

Opening: The ambiguo
A bit of literary nonsense from the early 19th century by English writer Thomas Love Peacock. Now you wouldn't expect someone with a name like that to write something serious would you?
Dec 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Came across this on the interesting Guardian 1000 list and very glad I did. Not having read the author before this was different to what I was expecting. For an 86 pages novella it's quite an entertaining read. The story revolves around Squire Harry Headlong who invites the "Intelligentsia" of the day to his country estate. Filled with some quite quirky and at times pompous characters this was to my surprise a story that appealed to my sense of humour once I became accustomed to the style of del ...more
From BBC Radio 4 Extra:
Winter, 1815: Harry Headlong, like all Welsh squires, is fond of shooting, hunting and drinking. But he becomes seized with a passion to form the acquaintance of philosophers and dilettanti.

Narrated by Sir Michael Hordern. Starring Daniel Massey as Escot, Ronald Lacey as Foster, John Grillo as Jenkison, John Horsley as Cranium and William Simons as Headlong.

Thomas Love Peacock's novella dramatised by James Saunders.

Producer: Matthew Walters

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in
Dec 09, 2012 rated it liked it
HEADLONG HALL. (1815). Thomas Love Peacock. ***.
The only other novel I’ve read by Peacock was “Crotchet’s Castle.” I do remember enjoying it, although it has been twenty years ago. This novel was Peacock’s first, and is lesser known and read, although it outlines his style that was to become his trademark. There is no plot to speak of. The whole premise is based on a holiday party, for Christmas, that was put on by Squire Headlong at his manor house in the country. He didn’t have close friends,
May 22, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour
Headlong Hall was the first of Thomas Love Peacock's novels and the simplest. I suppose it was intended as satire, but there is no longer any way of identifying who the characters represent among Peacock's contemporaries, except where he specifies in the notes. Happily, it works as comedy, even if it is not not roll-around-the-floor hilarious.

The set up is straightforward: a variety of guests are invited to spend time at a Welsh country house, there to discuss whatever takes their fancy. The thr
Sep 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
I read this because it was mentioned in The Moving Toyshop, which I loved, so I was curious. This was written in 1815 and I was floored by how the opinions variously expressed seemed to be very modern and the humor was still funny almost 200 years later. The language is difficult but I think that was supposed to be part of the humor. Having the Kindle helped hugely. And it is short, novella in length, so it didn't take long and you can skim over the wordy parts and the songs.

The point of the sat
I had never heard of this author, until his name popped up on the Guardian's list of 1000 novels everyone must read. I enjoyed it more than not--there were a couple of places I laughed out loud, but it was a little too jokey for me. Short though.

A satirical, and sometimes even slapstick, look at the Welsh gentry of 1815, I thought several times of Jane Austen's worlds, as they were contemporaneous. Both authors were poking fun at the same or similar human foibles, though in vastly different way
Marts  (Thinker)
Jan 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics
Squire Headlong invites a myriad of guests to his home for a party and many an interesting philosophical discourse occurs...
So that was quite enjoyable - if partly because of its brevity. A witty satire on the latest society intellectuals and the pretensions of a Welsh country squire / landowner wanting to fill his house with wit, brains and discussion and only succeeds in bringing together fragile egos, quackery, pseuds, fops and sycophants.

Plus ca change ....

The writing was funny, if limited and the observations interesting if blunt. I'm sure that the characters would have been instantly recognisable at the time of
Bryn (Plus Others)
What standards do I use to judge a novella from 1815? I found it interesting largely as a reflection of the times; he was satirising a number of ideas that were in the air by creating characters whose entirely worldview revolved around one particular idea. The names were of the sort later used by Dickens, there were various songs in the text... it was not much like anything else I have read, and I did enjoy it, but I was glad it was very short as it did not hang together as a story in any modern ...more
Great fun. Hilariously convoluted prose/dialogue and some very funny slapstick scenes. Will certainly go on to read Nightmare Abbey...
Timothy Ferguson
Oct 25, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: librivox
Is it cheating if you helped record the book? Headlong Hall was performed as a dramatic reading by Librivox, and I narrated. Like many people who listen to their own recordings, I think my bits the worst of the lot. It sounded fine on my own equipment, but through the $5 bud headphones I’m using on my phone (since the ridiculously expensive ones that came with it gave up the ghost) my part’s terrible. You can tell I have a mic that’s too powerful for the room, because there’s a lot of “air”. aro ...more
Nov 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
The satire is very heavy-handed, so it was somewhat dull, but fortunately brief. :) The satire is predominantly about three schools of philosophy: those who think that human progress in science/technology is positive, those who think it's a negative thing & that we were better off when humans were hardly more than apes, and the third that the positives & negatives pretty much cancel each other out. It was all right and would - should - be used in courses that examine satire as socio-poli ...more
Jan 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the first of Peacock’s books (published in 1815), an intellectually curious Welsh aristocrat hosts a holiday gathering with a guest list including a progressivist, a deteriorationist, a phrenologist, a landscape designer, a lady novelist, and others. If not quite as successful as Peacock’s more famous Nightmare Abbey, Headlong Hall is still great fun. The skull of Cadwallader makes a comical guest appearance.
I can't help but be a little let down by this novel. 'Nightmare Abbey' is so brilliant that I had high expectations for this one, which were bound to be disappointed. There are far less philosophical ideas that are made fun of. 'Nightmare Abbey' is a lot richer in ideas and diversity, which makes it a lot more fun to read.
Dec 27, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant satire played out in tightly choreographed sentences, laugh-aloud funny. Wit so dry I read it with a pucker. I can see why Tom Stoppard named him as a primary influence,but I was also reminded of Twain.
Nov 08, 2010 rated it liked it
What a strange little book! There really were several laugh-out-loud moments of satirical commentary on academics and their silly ways. The ending seems quite a perfect counterpoint to all the Austen novels.
May 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 1000-novels
Entertaining and enjoyable, think it's very successful at what it sets out to do
Sep 13, 2013 rated it liked it
More or less plotless but amusing. Mostly satirical philosophical discussions.
Not sure if I'd have enjoyed it if it was much longer.
Dec 01, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Apr 15, 2013 marked it as to-read
Shelves: to_read_nation
rated it it was amazing
Jan 11, 2008
rated it did not like it
Aug 28, 2012
rated it liked it
Dec 29, 2014
Stephen Bywater
rated it really liked it
Jan 21, 2016
Kamil Atakan
rated it it was amazing
Mar 05, 2016
Bill Yarrow
rated it it was amazing
May 25, 2007
Kathy Lyles
rated it liked it
Apr 26, 2017
Barb Williams
rated it liked it
Jan 24, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Guardian Newspape...: Dec 2017 - Headlong Hall 25 18 Nov 04, 2018 04:21PM  
  • Personality
  • Afternoon Men
  • Clayhanger
  • This Sporting Life
  • Novel on Yellow Paper (Revived Modern Classic)
  • Of Love and Hunger
  • A Girl in Winter
  • A Kind of Loving
  • GB84
  • Z
  • Love on the Dole
  • Comedy of Human Life, Vol. 17
  • Four Faultless Felons
  • Sybil, or the Two Nations
  • They Were Counted
  • Castle Rackrent
  • A Short Autobiography
  • Absolute Beginners
English novelist and poet. For most of his life Peacock worked for the East India Co. He was a close friend of Percy Bysshe Shelley, who greatly inspired his writing. His best verse is interspersed in his novels, which are dominated by the conversations of their characters and satirize the intellectual currents of the day. His best-known work, Nightmare Abbey (1818), satirizes romantic melancholy ...more
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »