Fiction Books

'An Old Boy' Illustrations by J Macfarlane: Tom Brown's Schooldays (13683A)

Macmillan and Co. 1904
8vo, red cloth cvred bds with titling + illustration to fr bd,
v v min wr overall o/w a v tight + clean copy. Prize plate dated 1906 + small name to fep VG++ 625 gms
(Order reference 13683A).

An 1857 novel by Thomas Hughes. The story is set at Rugby School, a public school for boys, in the 1830s; Hughes attended Rugby School from 1834 to 1842. The novel has been the source for several film and television adaptations.

The novel was originally published as being "by an Old Boy of Rugby", and much of it is based on the author's experiences. Tom Brown is largely based on the author's brother, George Hughes and the fictional Tom's life also resembles the author's in that the culminating event of his school career was a cricket match.

Tom Brown's School Days was tremendously influential on the genre of British school novels, which began in the 19th century, and led to Billy Bunter's Greyfriars School, Mr Chips' Brookfield, St. Trinian's, and Hogwarts. It is one of the few still in print from its time. A sequel, Tom Brown at Oxford, was published in 1861 but is not as well known.

Tom's principal enemy at Rugby is the bully Flashman. The 20th-century writer George MacDonald Fraser featured the grown-up Flashman in a series of successful historical novels.