The Absentee

Maria EDGEWORTH (1768 - 1849)

Published in 1812, “The Absentee” by Maria Edgeworth examines social injustice in 19th-century Britain. At that time, the management of many Irish estates suffered from the absenteeism of their Anglo-Irish landlords.

We meet Lord and Lady Clonbrony. Lord Clonbrony struggles with debt, while Lady Clonbrony tries to shed her Irish connections and earn status in London’s high society (known as “the ton.”) Meanwhile, their son, Lord Colambre, is wary of the entanglements of that society and escapes to the family estate in Ireland, where he discovers the abuses that have arisen in the family’s absence.

Maria Edgeworth was a pioneer of realism in fiction, and one of the most successful and popular novelists of her time. She offered satirical portraits of society manners and sympathetic treatment of regional life. Her work won admiration from authors such as Jane Austen and Sir Walter Scott. “The Absentee” is named in the reference list “1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die.” - Summary by Bruce Pirie

Genre(s): Literary Fiction, Published 1800 -1900

Language: English

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 01 Chapter 1 Bruce Pirie
00:27:58
Play 02 Chapter 2 Bruce Pirie
00:38:46
Play 03 Chapter 3 Bruce Pirie
00:36:48
Play 04 Chapter 4 Bruce Pirie
00:36:02
Play 05 Chapter 5 Bruce Pirie
01:03:15
Play 06 Chapter 6 Bruce Pirie
00:49:02
Play 07 Chapter 7 Bruce Pirie
00:36:24
Play 08 Chapter 8 Bruce Pirie
00:24:57
Play 09 Chapter 9 Bruce Pirie
00:39:57
Play 10 Chapter 10 Bruce Pirie
00:30:44
Play 11 Chapter 11 Bruce Pirie
00:25:29
Play 12 Chapter 12 Bruce Pirie
00:33:24
Play 13 Chapter 13 Bruce Pirie
00:48:53
Play 14 Chapter 14 Bruce Pirie
01:00:04
Play 15 Chapter 15 Bruce Pirie
00:30:05
Play 16 Chapter 16 Bruce Pirie
00:53:18
Play 17 Chapter 17 Bruce Pirie
00:46:03