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At the Circulating Library

A Database of Victorian Fiction, 1837–1901

A Database of Victorian Fiction, 1837–1901

Title: Venus' Doves

Author and Title: Ida Ashworth Taylor. Venus' Doves

First Edition: London: Hurst and Blackett, 1884. 3 volumes, cr. 8vo., 31s 6d.

Summary: Violet Yorke is a motherless girl living in genteel poverty in London. Her absent father much prefers society, abroad and in the country, than the company of his daughter. Violet's only friend is George Vereker, a distant cousin and painter. George entertains the thought of one day marrying Violet, but his finances will probably never allow it. Mr. Yorke marries while in France and brings home a rich wife and a step-daughter Esmee Verner. Violet, used to her independence, chafes under the guidance of the new Mrs. Yorke. Through George, Violet meets Regy Charteris, a handsome man newly come into property. He immediately falls in love with Violet. During a visit to his country house, he rashly kisses Violet—she forgives him, but the action leads to much confusion on both sides. One winter night, after an argument with her step-mother, Violet flees the home and goes to George to find him out of the country. Regy, who happens to be there at the same time, takes Violet to his sister's house. To protect her reputation and because he loves her, Regy proposes and the two are quickly married. Violet agrees in order to escape her home though she admittedly does not love Regy. The rest of the novel chronicles Violet's growing feelings for Regy, her rejection of George (who pursues her in spite of her marriage), and her eventual confession of her love to Regy. A subplot involves Esmee's choice between the impoverished but charming Charlie Clinton and the staid Sir Edward Farquhar. She initially accepts Farquhar for his position but breaks off the match after a near-fatal illness forces her to confess her true feeling for Charlie. (TJB)

References: EC


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