George Eliot, her early home, Illustrated by Patty Townsend

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This is one of the most popular items in the library collection and is illustrated by several artists including Patty Townsend a local artist who was married to a wealthy businessman Fielding Johnson. It’s “chocolate box” style gives a romanticised view of Eliot’s Nuneaton, showing faint glimmers of the changing industrial landscape in only a few of the scenes. It shows the places and people that inspired her early stories. Published by the famous postcard company Raphael Tuck, this copy has an inscription by Patty Townsend to her parents and so is particularly special.

This short film about the book was created for the Unscripted project, exploring creative responses to the collection.