Wild Romance: A Victorian Story of a Marriage, a Trial, and a Self-Made Woman

Wild Romance A Victorian Story of a Marriage a Trial and a Self Made Woman A riveting recreation of one of Victorian England s biggest scandals the first book by a rising talent On a steamer passage from France to England in nineteen year old Theresa Longworth met Wil

  • Title: Wild Romance: A Victorian Story of a Marriage, a Trial, and a Self-Made Woman
  • Author: Chloe Schama
  • ISBN: 9781408807026
  • Page: 245
  • Format: Hardcover
  • A riveting recreation of one of Victorian England s biggest scandals, the first book by a rising talent.On a steamer passage from France to England in 1852, nineteen year old Theresa Longworth met William Charles Yelverton, a soldier destined to become the Viscount Avon A flirtation began that soon blossomed into a clandestine, epistolary affair, ranging from the shorA riveting recreation of one of Victorian England s biggest scandals, the first book by a rising talent.On a steamer passage from France to England in 1852, nineteen year old Theresa Longworth met William Charles Yelverton, a soldier destined to become the Viscount Avon A flirtation began that soon blossomed into a clandestine, epistolary affair, ranging from the shores of England to the battlefields of the Crimean War Five years after their first meeting they married secretly in Edinburgh, and then, at Theresa s urging, they married again that summer in Dublin or did they Separated by circumstance soon after they were wed, the two would never again live together as man and wife When Yelverton left Theresa to marry another woman, Theresa found herself having to prove that their marriage had ever existed Multiple trials ensued, in Ireland, England, and Scotland, and for months their scandal captivated each nation Newspapers broadcast each detail of the proceedings, songwriters dedicated ballads to Theresa, and novelists such as Wilkie Collins borrowed the courtroom melodrama for their plots Over the course of the very public ordeal, Theresa lost any chance of a private married life.In this brilliant debut, Chlo Schama portrays a woman at the forefront of changes that the twentieth century would bring to women s lives everywhere Theresa s story is both a courtroom drama full of steamy intrigue and the chronicle of how one woman made a life for herself as an unmarried author and public speaker in a society that had little space for either Thrust into the spotlight, Theresa reincarnated herself as Teresina Peregrina, traversing the globe and writing about her journeys she visited the Mormons in the American West, crossed paths with John Muir in Yosemite, and ventured into the far reaches of Asia and Africa, where she spent the last years of her life Events beyond her control forced Theresa to become a woman of the world, when she would have settled for a world defined by her husband.In Wild Romance, Chlo Schama unearths the inspiring tale of a woman who held onto her ideals of independence, of self reliance, and despite everything of love, and who never gave up.

    • Wild Romance: A Victorian Story of a Marriage, a Trial, and a Self-Made Woman ¦ Chloe Schama
      245 Chloe Schama
    • thumbnail Title: Wild Romance: A Victorian Story of a Marriage, a Trial, and a Self-Made Woman ¦ Chloe Schama
      Posted by:Chloe Schama
      Published :2019-07-17T12:17:23+00:00

    About "Chloe Schama"

    1. Chloe Schama

      Chlo Schama has written for the New Republic, the New York Sun, and the Guardian She lives in Washington, D.C.

    151 thoughts on “Wild Romance: A Victorian Story of a Marriage, a Trial, and a Self-Made Woman”

    1. I had a hard time with this book (a win) and I will explain why, but first I want to make one thing clear. My dislike of this book is not due to the author's lack of skill or finesse. The research put into this book is impeccable. My dislike for this book stems more from my personal dislike of the woman it is about. This is about Theresa Longworth aka Theresa Yelverton aka Teresina Peregrina, a woman who during the late 1800s made waves in England with her scandalous marriage and divorce. The f [...]


    2. This book shows that even in the 1800's "he's just not that into you" existed. This woman supposedly had 2 "secret" marriages performed to this man, who then went on to marry another woman. A couple of lawsuits later, she gives up and goes traveling across the globe, writing novels and travel guides to support herself.Obviously the story is more complex than that, and this book does a good job of showing it. The line that summed it up for me, came at the end: "e greatest campaign of her life was [...]


    3. Another history on one of my pet subjects, which is how badly the law has treated women. At the heart of the book is Theresa Yelverton and her various suits for bigamy against her purported husband, Charles Yelverton. Actually no, at the heart of the book is Theresa Yelverton and her egotistical obsession with defining herself as the love of Charles Yelverton's life. Or is Theresa's obsession with justice? Or is she, quite simply, a bit mad?One thing is for sure, Theresa is extremely unlikeable. [...]


    4. This work of non-fiction explores the woman behind the 1861 trial referred to as the Yelverton Bigamy Trial, which "attracted national, front-page attention for weeks" (xi). Although the trial was something of a sensation in its day, (indeed, "between fifty and one hundred thousand people" gathered to hear the verdict (101)), the story faded into obscurity over time. Theresa Longworth met William Charles Yelverton on a steamship when Yelverton returned her fallen shawl to her and they struck up [...]


    5. I decided to read/review this book because the title of the book screams SCANDAL – and everyone loves to read about a good scandal! This was certainly quite the scandal, but the book overall didn’t quite pan out that way I would have liked.The first half of the book focuses on detailing Theresa’s relationship with Yelverton and then going into the various trials that ensued in Scotland, Ireland and England that were to prove whether these two were actually married or not. This section of t [...]


    6. Interesting story that needs a bit more fleshing out. I would have enjoying learning more about exactly HOW she lived her life - as in, the logistics of her moves, her travels, etc. She was always bopping around from one place to another, travelling the world, yet the author never talks about her money, how she paid for the travel, why she decided to move different places, how did she manage to get invitations to stay with certain people, how one goes about joining a religious order and becoming [...]


    7. A good workmanlike summary of one of the most influential legal cases of its period. Theresa Longwood and William Yelverton married -- but in Scotland, not the UK. Since the marriage laws were not congruent the union wasn't valid in all the polities and wow! Can you have lawsuits, when the marriage hits the rocks! This was the fountain for many a Victorian novel, and there's probably still gold in them thar hills.


    8. The problem with this book is one of pacing. It is not, as the subtitle implies, a book about the Yelverton case (in brief: Yelverton, a military officer, had a secret relationship with Theresa Longworth, an unmarried young woman of slightly lower social status; he identified as Anglican and she as Catholic; they had some sort of ambiguous secret marriage ceremony, which she believed was valid and he did not; after he publicly married another woman Theresa took him to court alleging that he was [...]


    9. Really 2.5 stars. A very well researched book, with a potentially interesting subject. However, Theresa Longwoth Yelverton just was not very likeable. However, it does give the reader an idea of just how restrictive society was for women in the Victorian era.


    10. A decent little book about Theresa Longworth/Yelverton, an Englishwoman who made headlines when she sued her purported husband for bigamy--according to Theresa, they had secretly married in Scotland, while Yelverton testified to living (and having sex) with her, but not under any legal arrangement. After ultimately losing her legal battle to be recognized as Yelverton's wife, Theresa became a world traveler and journalist, with stops in Utah, California (and an apparent crush/friendship--though [...]


    11. This is an impressive debut by Chloe Schama, daughter of the famous historian, Simon Schama. My historical intake is usually limited to fiction and I do feel the need to be entertained as well as educated. Certainly this is an entertaining, well written book. The story of the courtship and "marriages" of Charles Yelverton and Theresa Longworth fascinated the Victorian public and was the inspiration for Wilkie Collins' novel Man and Wife in which he criticised the state of marriage laws in the Un [...]


    12. Loved the first half of this nonfiction book on the life of Theresa Longworth, but, the second half which chronicles her world-travels after her oh-so-famous trials left me bored. I picked up Wild Romance: A Victorian Story of a Marriage, a Trial, and a Self-Made Woman because I'm a fan of Victorian literature. I've read a handful of novels that fall into the "inspired-by" category. Authors whose works deal with irregular marriages--Irish, Scottish, etc. Marriages whose legitimacy was sometimes [...]


    13. A while ago I complained that I didn’t read the blurbs on books thoroughly enough and that I should endeavour to do so just so I know what I’m getting into. I forgot about that deal. I had absolutely no idea that the book I was buying was based on real life events; it wasn’t until I googled the names of these people, after reading the preface, that I realised that these people were indeed real and these events really did take place.I really got into this book. I really enjoyed learning abo [...]


    14. I picked this book up at a library sale on bag day because it had an intriguing title for a non-fiction book. There was no dust jacket so I just took a quick peek at the first sentence of the Preface, which looked interesting, so I threw the book in my bag.* The Preface was about how the author discovered Theresa Longworth and came to write about her and it turned out to be by far the best thing about the book. The author's research was more interesting than her subject. Theresa was delusional a [...]


    15. This is such a difficult book to review; through the use of personal letters, newspaper articles, and court documents, Wild Romance has the feel of a memoir. However, Ms. Schama's use of Theresa's experiences also makes Wild Romance a social commentary. A reader feels this dual nature of the book via his or her feelings towards Theresa and Yelverton. Theresa comes across as needy, clingy, conceited and very self-absorbed, while Yelverton appears as a cold-hearted womanizer. Yet, while neither is [...]


    16. Wild Romance tells the story of Theresa Longworth, a Victorian woman who broke out of conventions to get what she wanted. The first half focused on her pursuit of, affair with, and marriage to William Charles Yelverton, and on the trial that sought to determine if that marriage was valid. I really enjoyed this half of the book - it read quickly, held my interest, and presented a fascinating analysis of Theresa's strategies and the public's view of them. It looked closely at the expected roles of [...]


    17. Won on giveaway. From the beginning of Wild Romance I could feel the passion of Chloe Schama’s research for the characters and background for her book. This is a great true story about Theresa Longworth and William Charles Yelverton who meet in 1852. They secretly marry (twice with no witnesses) and after being separated awhile, Yelverton takes a “real” bride and moves on with his life. Theresa has to prove their marriage did indeed exist. The story is of an independent woman who made a l [...]


    18. I can't say that I was overly enthusiastic about this book. This is not some bodice ripper romance novel and nor did I think it was. What I do think is that there was something more that could have been done to make this more interesting. Women have been wronged since the beginning of time, no need to speculate about that, more often than not the heart is worn on the sleeve and much more is read into a situation that what is really there. Men are callous they will take the heart and feelings of [...]


    19. Divorce may be easier and marriage laws more consistent, but Schama's exploration of Theresa Longworth's love affair with Charles Yelverton and its aftermath resounds with the modern reader, given its themes of obsessive love and the search for the self after subsuming oneself in that love. Indeed, WIld Romance resembles nothing so much as a scholarly version of today's chick lit.The facts in the case seem derived from a Victorian potboiler, and indeed, inspired many such novels. A young woman m [...]


    20. Wild Romance is a fine account of the curious case of Theresa Longworth and her "husband" Yelverton. I say "husband" because his status as such is exactly what this book is about; an atypical courtship, a contentious matrimony, a sensational trial and a life spent in rebuttal.Chloe Schama has done an excellent job of showing both sides of the Longworth/Yelverton story without pressing her personal opinion regarding the events on the reader too much. It's clear that Ms. Schama did thorough resear [...]


    21. This book presented me with quite a conundrum. It's very well written and interesting, yet presents a story featuring a woman for whom I had absolutely no sympathy, and a man for whom I had nothing but contempt. For all Theresa's cleverness, and she is too clever for her own good and time, sadly, she has the unfortunate inability that some women continue to have to this day; she is unable to see when a man is doing and saying just what he needs to in order to get her into bed. When she is inevit [...]


    22. Interesting story of a woman who struggles to understand marriage and it's legal ramifications in various countries from Scotland to England to the US. The first half of the book is largely based on primary sources about the contested marriage of Theresa Longworth and is intriguing. But maybe due to primary sources as detailed, the second half of the book lost my interest. There was a little too much guess work and the author gave Theresa too much credit in challenging the 19th century marriage [...]


    23. I was a bit iffy over what I was going to rate this book. At times it was really interesting and really good, and at other times I was very bored. I pushed through those bits though, as I knew it'd get better later.My opinion on her earlier relationship with Y is this. She should have accepted that he really wasn't interested, and he should never have accepted to being married, he should have ignored her or told her to leave him alone. They were both in the wrong.I think the little facts Schama [...]


    24. Very interesting! And the phrase "meticulously researched" certainly springs to mind. I especially enjoyed the descriptions of old San Francisco ("'Glorious' was the best word to describe the city as it transitioned from frontier outpost to cosmopolitan center, and it was on everyone's lips"; "Polite society, however, had never existed in San Francisco") and the discussions of the trouble with the mess that was marriage and family law.


    25. I found this to be extremely readable. As in I read it in about five hours one afternoon. The only part where I felt the book sagged was in the chapters on San Francisco and her early life in America where the author left Theresa and began writing about the places she was in and the people around her instead. Don't get me wrong: it was still interesting, but i found Theresa herself to be such a fascinating personality that I missed her, missed reading her commentary on the world around her.


    26. Theresa Yelverton was unique in her time; a well-traveled, educated and ultimately unmarried woman. When her husband marries another woman, Theresa challenges his actions in court. She was granted married status by Scotland, only to be declared officially unmarried by England. A well-researched discourse of Theresa's life, this book highlights the lonely challenges an unconventional woman faced during the Victorian Era.


    27. I believed a review that promised the book read like a novel. Didn't find it to be true and struggled with footnoted excerpt which may have given credibility to the the actual events, but, in my opinion, distracted from the flow of the story. Only because of my stubborn streak did I complete reading this book.


    28. This was a decently written book, but it failed to be interesting. The case is great material to draw on, but Chloe Schama just couldn't make it work. The story seemed to drag on and I was bored, feeling like I was reading a lot of filler. I was desperate to finish the book, just to read something else that was bound to be more interesting.


    29. a major scandal, bigamy and a trial -- what's not to like? the main character! she is just not sympathetic. while the story is based on a very true incident, it isn't a pleasure to read. since i read for entertainment as much as information, i prefer characters i can feel kindly toward and a storyline that speaks to me.


    30. This was interesting. A woman who was ahead of her time. Got duped by a man but also didn't send the right messages to him either. They are both at fault. Would like to read some of her travel memoirs.


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