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Dr. Dumany's Wife   By: (1825-1904)

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Dr. Dumany's Wife, written by Mór Jókai, is a captivating and thought-provoking novel set in the 19th century. The narrative revolves around the central character, Mrs. Dumany, and her journey of self-discovery and transformation.

The story begins with Mrs. Dumany, a sheltered and submissive woman who is married to the renowned Dr. Dumany. Living in a stifling and restrictive environment, she yearns for freedom and a chance to explore her own desires. However, her husband's traditional beliefs and societal expectations confine her to the role of a dutiful wife.

As the plot unfolds, Mrs. Dumany's mundane and predictable existence takes an unexpected turn when she encounters a mysterious stranger, Michael Bálványos. This meeting triggers a series of events that challenge her perception of love, loyalty, and societal norms. Jókai skillfully weaves together romance, drama, and suspense, keeping the readers on the edge of their seats throughout the book.

What sets Dr. Dumany's Wife apart is the author's masterful portrayal of his characters. Mrs. Dumany's character transformation is portrayed with great depth and nuance. Jókai takes the readers on an emotional rollercoaster as they witness her evolution from a timid and uncertain woman to a confident and self-assured individual. Likewise, the other characters in the novel are equally well-developed, each with their own distinct personalities and intriguing storylines.

Furthermore, Jókai's vivid and detailed descriptions of the settings immerse the readers in the enchanting world of 19th-century Hungary. From the opulent ballrooms to the picturesque countryside, every scene is meticulously crafted, allowing the readers to visualize and experience the story alongside the characters.

One aspect that may strike readers is the novel's commentary on societal expectations, particularly regarding women during that era. Through Mrs. Dumany's journey, Jókai questions the limitations imposed on women and challenges the status quo. The book raises important questions about gender roles and the societal pressures that can stifle individual growth and happiness.

Overall, Dr. Dumany's Wife is an exceptional piece of literature that seamlessly blends romance, mystery, and social commentary. Mór Jókai's writing style captivates the readers from start to finish, offering a compelling narrative that explores the complexities of love, identity, and the pursuit of personal fulfillment. Recommended for those who appreciate historical fiction and strong character development, this novel undoubtedly leaves a lasting impression.

First Page:

Works of Maurus Jókai Hungarian Edition


Translated from the Hungarian by F. STEINITZ

New York Doubleday, Page & Company 1891


This, the latest story from the pen of Hungary's great man of letters, Maurus Jókai, was translated directly from the manuscript of the author by Mme. F. Steinitz, who resides in Buda Pest, and was selected by him for that purpose.

Maurus Jókai is now sixty six years of age, having been born at Komaróm, in 1825. He was intended for the law, that having been his father's profession but at twelve years of age the desire to write seized him. Some of his stories fell into the hands of the lawyer in whose office he was studying, who read them, and was so struck by their originality and talent that he published them at once at his own expense. The public was as well pleased with the book as the lawyer had been with the manuscripts, and from that tender age to the present Jókai has devoted himself to writing, and is the author of several hundred successful volumes. At the age of twenty three he laid down his pen long enough to get married, his bride being Rosa Laborfalvi, the then leading Hungarian actress. At the end of a year he joined the Revolutionists, and buckled on the sword of the patriot. He was taken prisoner and sentenced to be shot, when his bride appeared upon the scene with her pockets full of the money she had made by the sale of her jewels, and, bribing the guards, escaped with her husband into the birch woods, where they hid in caves and slept on leaves, all the time in danger of their lives, until they finally found their way to Buda Pest and liberty... Continue reading book >>

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