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Sunday, July 31, 2011

George Eliot's House Cheyne Walk

The celebrated English novelist George Eliot (aka Mary Ann Evans) lived until her death in this house in Cheyne Walk in Chelsea, London.

Born in Warwickshire, Mary Ann Evans was the daughter of a farm manager. Though a voracious reader, Evans grew up with little formal education.

She moved to London aged 30 working as an editor of the The Westminster Review, after living in Coventry during her 20s, and it was her move to the capital and her controversial (for the time) relationship with the married George Henry Lewes that was the stimulus for the publication of her greatest works.

Under the male pen name of George Eliot, Evans was to author such famous Victorian novels as Adam Bede (1859), The Mill on the Floss (1860), Silas Marner (1861), Middlemarch (1871–72), and Daniel Deronda (1876).

After the death of Lewes in 1878, Eliot married the American banker John Walter Cross, and following a honeymoon in Venice, the couple settled in Cheyne Walk in Chelsea. Eliot lived here until her death on 22 December 1880 aged 61. She is buried in Highgate Cemetery in North London.

The Peace Pagoda in Battersea Park is across the river from Chelsea.

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