CHAPTER 1. THE DAWN OF A GALA DAY
25 April 2022
Set in English society before the 1832 Reform Bill, Wives and Daughters centers on the story of youthful Molly Gibson, brought up from childhood by her father. When he remarries, a new step-sister enters Molly's quiet life – loveable, but worldly and troubling, Cynthia. The narrative traces the development of the two girls into womanhood within the gossiping and watchful society of Hollingford. When Elizabeth Gaskell died suddenly in 1865, the novel was not quite complete, and after chapter 60, there is a 'Concluding Remark' section by the editor of the Cornhill Magazine, in which the novel was serialized.