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Ruth by Elizabeth Gaskell
By: (1810-1865)

The book is a social novel, dealing with Victorian views about sin and illegitimacy. It is a surprisingly compassionate portrayal of a ‘fallen woman’, a type of person normally outcast from respectable society. The title of the novel refers to the main character Ruth Hilton, an orphaned young seamstress who is seduced and then abandoned by gentleman Henry Bellingham. Ruth, pregnant and alone, is taken in by a minister and his sister. They conceal her single status under the pretence of widowhood in order to protect her child from the social stigma of illegitimacy. Ruth goes on to gain a respectable position in society as a governess, which is threatened by the return of Bellingham and the revelation of her secret. (Wikipedia)

First Page:

E text prepared by Charles Aldarondo and revised by Joseph E. Loewenstein, M.D.




First published in book form by Chapman and Hall in 1853


I. The Dressmaker's Apprentice at Work II. Ruth Goes to the Shire Hall III. Sunday at Mrs Mason's IV. Treading in Perilous Places V. In North Wales VI. Troubles Gather About Ruth VII. The Crisis Watching and Waiting VIII. Mrs Bellingham "Does the Thing Handsomely" IX. The Storm Spirit Subdued X. A Note and the Answer XI. Thurstan and Faith Benson XII. Losing Sight of the Welsh Mountains XIII. The Dissenting Minister's Household XIV. Ruth's First Sunday at Eccleston XV. Mother and Child XVI. Sally Tells of Her Sweethearts, and Discourses on the Duties of Life XVII. Leonard's Christening XVIII. Ruth Becomes a Governess in Mr Bradshaw's Family XIX. After Five Years XX. Jemima Refuses to Be Managed XXI... Continue reading book >>

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Reviews (Rated: 5 Stars - 3 reviews)

Reviewer: - December 3, 2018
Subject: Ruth
This book is very worth listening to with an excellent reader!!! Truly a touching novel!!!
Reviewer: - November 28, 2018
Subject: Ruth
Ruth was a very touching and amazing book just like Elizabeth Gaskell's other book...North and South (although some of the readers weren't as good as Cynthia was). Cynthia really read it beautifully!!! Thankyou. Can't wait to listen to another of Elizabeth's books!!!
Reviewer: - September 23, 2014
Subject: Ruth
Fine reading, I enjoyed the story thanks to Cynthia Lyons. It was a great work

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