at South Farm, Arbury, Warwickshire, the youngest of three children of Robert Evans’s second marriage to Christiana Pearson. 29 November baptised Mary Anne Evans at Chilvers Coton Parish church.
where her father was agent for the Arbury estate of Francis Newdigate.
with her sister Chrissie.
where she becomes very friendly with Miss Maria Lewis, the principal governess and a strong evangelical.
run by the daughters of the Baptist minister.
at Christmas, aged 16.
Mary Anne takes charge of her father’s household at Griff, continues with tutors in Italian, German, Greek and Latin and piano lessons with music teacher Elliot McEwan in Hinckley. She is now spelling her name Mary Ann.
a religious poem, appears in the Christian Observer in January
In March, Robert Evans and his daughter move to a house, Bird Grove, in Foleshill, Coventry. Mary Ann meets Charles and Cara Bray, Coventry freethinkers, through whom she makes contact with Sara Hennell and her brother Charles Hennell, author of An Enquiry into the Origins of Christianity (1838). Through them and their circle of radical, intellectual friends, Mary Ann’s religious faith is challenged. Adopts the name ‘Marian’.
but finally agrees to accompany him at the end of what she called their ‘Holy War’.
in November with his daughter who had undertaken a translation of David Friedrich Strauss’s work of historical criticism: Das Leben Jesu (1835), but who discontinued it after her marriage to Charles Hennell.
Marian received £20 for the labour; her name did not appear in the publication.
Marian goes abroad in June with the Brays, and stays in Geneva by herself for eight months.
lives with the Brays for seven months.
She lodges in 142 Strand, his home, an intellectual hub for scientists, reformers, artists, political thinkers from around the world. In March Marian is driven away from 142 Strand by the jealousy of Chapman’s wife and mistress. In September a truce is agreed and she returns to edit the journal.
a great wit and versatile man of letters.
In the same month she and Lewes leave for Germany together, first visiting Weimar, and then spending the winter in Berlin where Marian begins the translation of Spinoza’s Ethics. Lewes could not obtain a divorce because he had condoned his wife’s adultery.
where Lewes’s Life of Goethe is published to general and lasting acclaim.
(later published as Sea-side Studies 1858) and then on to Tenby where, in July Marian begins writing her story: ‘The Sad Fortunes of Amos Barton’, the first of Scenes of Clerical Life.
Marian assumes the pseudonym ‘George Eliot’. Begins writing Adam Bede in October.
in two volumes in January. In April they go to Munich and Dresden for a stay of five months.
in three volumes in February to critical acclaim; 16,000 copies sold in the first year.
in three volumes in April as they leave for a holiday in Italy, where, in May, George Eliot projects a historical novel based on the life of Savonarola, to be called ‘Romola’. Abandons the project in September in despair.
Eliot & Lewes return to Florence to collect more material for the previously abandoned novel Romola.
in 3 volumes in July, after appearing in fourteen parts in the Cornhill magazine. In August they move to The Priory, Regent’s Park, the house associated with the novelist’s most famous years.
a tragic play in blank verse. Abandons it.
in three volumes in June but sales disappointing. Takes up Spanish Gypsy again. They set off for Spain in December to collect material.
now a dramatic poem, published in April. Sells well, popular in America.
(Featherstone – Vincy part). Lewes’ second son Thornton returns from Natal with spinal tuberculosis and dies in October.
and in November begins a new story ‘Miss Brooke’ which develops rapidly.
early in the year to create the first section of Middlemarch, to be published in eight parts. Book 1 published in December.
in December and is also published in four volumes.
on the same plan as Middlemarch in February.
GE refuses to see anyone for several weeks.
and the Lewes’ accountant and family friend, John Cross.
Married in May, upon which her brother Isaac, after twenty-three years of estrangement, writes to congratulate her. Moves to Cheyne Walk, Chelsea.
Buried in Highgate Cemetery.