The New Magdalen

The New Magdalen

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The New Magdalen by Wilkie Collins

Published:

1873

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The New Magdalen

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A treatment of the fashionable theme of the 'fallen woman' who attempts to put her past behind her but is repeatedly thwarted by the prejudices of respectable English society.

Book Excerpt

ime," answered a soft voice with an underlying melancholy in it, plainly distinguishable though it had only spoken three words.

"Come in, then," continued the surgeon, "and bring the English lady with you. Here is a quiet room all to yourselves."

He held back the canvas, and the two women appeared.

The nurse led the way--tall, lithe, graceful--attired in her uniform dress of neat black stuff, with plain linen collar and cuffs, and with the scarlet cross of the Geneva Convention embroidered on her left shoulder. Pale and sad, her expression and manner both eloquently suggestive of suppressed suffering and sorrow, there was an innate nobility in the carriage of this woman's head, an innate grandeur in the gaze of her large gray eyes and in the lines of her finely proportioned face, which made her irresistibly striking and beautiful, seen under any circumstances and clad in any dress. Her companion, darker in complexion and smaller in stature, possessed attractions which were quite marked en

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