A notable novel of power and interest, marking the close of an era ending with the Queen's jubilee in 1897. Its action covers less than a year. The central theme is the Polchester cathedral, splendid and massive, "become a god demanding his own rites and worshippers." Against the background of its magnificence and petty village life is fought the duel for supremacy between simple-minded, autocratic archdeacon Brandon, symbolizing the arrogance of the church, and Canon Ronder, used by destiny as a blind, impersonal force to break in pieces the old order to make way for the new.
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