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Powys, T(heodore) F(rancis)

wine weston century twentieth

(British, 1875–1953)

T. F. Powys was one of eleven children born to a clergyman in Dorset. (An older brother was the novelist John Cowper Powys.) After running his own farm in Suffolk, T. F. Powys retired to Dorset where he lived an extremely secluded life. He writes in a simple, biblical style, and his novels and short stories are allegories for the twentieth century. His best-known book is Mr Weston's Good Wine (1927) about the inhabitants of the small rural community of Maidenbridge. The town is presided over by Mr Weston who is not only a commercial traveller but also, it seems, God, who dispenses the light wine of joy and the dark wine of tragic acceptance. Mr Weston's efforts are aided by the Archangel Michael. If you can get past the ‘Mummerset’ language and attitudes, T. F. Powys offers a visionary literature about rural Britain which was unique in the twentieth century.

Flannery O'Connor, D. H. Lawrence, H. E. Bates  LM

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