Auriol, or The Elixir of Life

William Harrison AINSWORTH (1805 - 1882)

If you stumble upon the elixir of life, which provides you with eternal life, youth and health, then it's rather a bad idea to spoil this great gift by signing a pact with the devil on top of it to receive great financial fortune as well. Auriol Darcy, the protagonist of our story, has in fact made this mistake, but soon finds out that the price to pay is much too high to bear. And getting out of a pact with the devil is never easy.

William Harrison Ainsworth's novel is divided into three parts and the final part provides quite a surprise twist ending, which will not be revealed here. The surrealistic plot and setting and especially the psychological elements give this novel quite a modern touch, considering it's been written as early as 1844. The colourful characterization of some shady people from the lower classes of society lend a humouristic touch to the story which provides a nice contrast to the otherwise gloomy gothic atmosphere of the main plot. - Summary by Sonia

Genre(s): Gothic Fiction

Language: English

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 01 Prologue (1599) - Dr. Lamb Sonia
00:34:50
Play 02 Book the First: Ebba - Chapter I. The ruined house in the Vauxhall Road Sonia
00:16:10
Play 03 Book 1 - Chapter II. The dog-fancier Sonia
00:25:20
Play 04 Book 1 - Chapter III. The hand and the cloak Sonia
00:23:39
Play 05 Book 1 - Chapter IV. The iron-merchant's daughter Sonia
00:13:36
Play 06 Book 1 - Chapter V. The meeting near the statue Sonia
00:09:26
Play 07 Book 1 - Chapter VI. The Charles the Second spaniel Sonia
00:14:48
Play 08 Book 1 - Chapter VII. The hand again ! Sonia
00:08:36
Play 09 Book 1 - Chapter VIII. The barber of London Sonia
00:12:14
Play 10 Book 1 - Chapter IX. The moon in the first quarter Sonia
00:08:39
Play 11 Book 1 - Chapter X. The statue at Charing Cross Sonia
00:15:46
Play 12 Book 1 - Chapter XI. Preparations Sonia
00:06:33
Play 13 Book 1 - Chapter XII. The chamber of mystery Sonia
00:10:38
Play 14 Intermean (1800) - Chapter I. The tomb of the Rosicrucian Sonia
00:11:49
Play 15 Intermean - Chapter II. The compact Sonia
00:11:12
Play 16 Intermean - Chapter III. Irresolution Sonia
00:06:32
Play 17 Intermean - Chapter IV. Edith Talbot Sonia
00:10:30
Play 18 Intermean - Chapter V. The seventh night Sonia
00:06:14
Play 19 Book the Second: Cyprian Rougemont - Chapter I. The cell Sonia
00:09:05
Play 20 Book 2 - Chapter II. The enchanted chairs Sonia
00:18:08
Play 21 Book 2 - Chapter III. Gerard Paston Sonia
00:08:06
Play 22 Book 2 - Chapter IV. The pit Sonia
00:11:54
Play 23 Book 2 - Chapter V. New perplexities Sonia
00:09:37
Play 24 Book 2 - Chapter VI. Doctor Lamb again Sonia
00:13:36