Read Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell Online
Authors: Susanna Clarke
Tags: #Fiction, #Fantasy, #Historical, #Literary, #Media Tie-In, #General
Illustrations by Portia Rosenberg
First published in Great Britain 2004
Copyright © 2004 by Susanna Clarke
This electronic edition published 2009 by Bloomsbury Publishing Plc
The right of Susanna Clarke to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988
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A CIP catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library
Illustrations copyright © 2004 by Portia Rosenberg
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In memory of my brother,
Paul Frederick Gunn Clarke, 1961–2000
1 The library at Hurtfew
2 The Old Starre Inn
3 The stones of York
4 The Friends of English Magic
6 "Magic is not respectable, sir."
7 An opportunity unlikely to occur again
8 A gentleman with thistle-down hair
9 Lady Pole
10 The difficulty of finding employment for a magician
12 The Spirit of English Magic urges Mr Norrell to the Aid of Britannia
13 The magician of Thread needle-street
14 Heart-break Farm
15 "How is Lady Pole?"
17 The unaccountable appearance of twenty-five guineas
18 Sir Walter consults gentlemen in several professions
19 The Peep-O' Day-Boys
20 The unlikely milliner
21 The cards of Marseilles
22 The Knight of Wands
23 The Shadow House
24 Another magician
25 The education of a magician
26 Orb, crown and sceptre
27 The magician's wife
28 The Duke of Roxburghe's library
29 At the house of José Estoril
30 The book of Robert Findhelm
31 Seventeen dead Neapolitans
32 The King
Place the moon at my eyes
34 On the edge of the desert
35 The Nottinghamshire gentleman
36 All the mirrors of the world
37 The Cinque Dragownes
The Edinburgh Review
39 The two magicians
40 "Depend upon it; there is no such place."
42 Strange decides to write a book
43 The curious adventure of Mr Hyde
45 Prologue to
The History and Practice of English Magic
46 The sky spoke to me . .
47 "A black lad and a blue fella – that ought to mean summat."
48 The Engravings
49 Wildness and madness
The History and Practice of English Magic
51 A family by the name of Greysteel
52 The old lady of Cannaregio
53 A little dead grey mouse
54 A little box, the colour of heartache
The second shall see his dearest possession in his enemy's hand
56 The Black Tower
57 The Black Letters
58 Henry Woodhope pays a visit
59 Leucrocuta, the Wolf of the Evening
60 Tempest and lies
61 Tree speaks to Stone; Stone speaks to Water
I came to them in a cry that broke the silence of a winter wood
The first shall bury his heart in a dark wood beneath the snow, yet still feel its ache
64 Two versions of Lady Pole
65 The ashes, the pearls, the counterpane and the kiss
66 Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell
67 The hawthorn tree
69 Strangites and Norrellites
He hardly ever spoke of magic, and when he
did it was like a history lesson and no one
could bear to listen to him.
Autumn 1806 — January 1807
OME YEARS AGO there was in the city of York a society of magicians. They met upon the third Wednesday of every month and read each other long, dull papers upon the history of English magic.
They were gentleman-magicians, which is to say they had never harmed any one by magic — nor ever done any one the slightest good. In fact, to own the truth, not one of these magicians had ever cast the smallest spell, nor by magic caused one leaf to tremble upon a tree, made one mote of dust to alter its course or changed a single hair upon any one's head. But, with this one minor reservation, they enjoyed a reputation as some of the wisest and most magical gentlemen in Yorkshire.
A great magician has said of his profession that its practitioners ". . . must pound and rack their brains to make the least learning go in, but quarrelling always comes very naturally to them,"
and the York magicians had proved the truth of this for a number of years.
In the autumn of 1806 they received an addition in a gentleman called John Segundus. At the first meeting that he attended Mr Segundus rose and addressed the society. He began by complimenting the gentlemen upon their distinguished history; he listed the many celebrated magicians and historians that had at one time or another belonged to the York society. He hinted that it had been no small inducement to him in coming to York to know of the existence of such a society. Northern magicians, he reminded his audience, had always been better respected than southern ones. Mr Segundus said that he had studied magic for many years and knew the histories of all the great magicians of long ago. He read the new publications upon the subject and had even made a modest contribution to their number, but recently he had begun to wonder why the great feats of magic that he read about remained on the pages of his book and were no longer seen in the street or written about in the newspapers. Mr Segundus wished to know, he said, why modern magicians were unable to work the magic they wrote about. In short, he wished to know why there was no more magic done in England.