Moll Flanders Daniel Defoe

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Daniel Defoe was born in 1660 as the son of a Londoner merchant. In 1685 he opened his own business in which he was not successful and went bankrupt in 1692. At that time Defoe got interested in the social and industrial changes in Great Britain and Europe. In 1697 he wrote his first book. Between 1703 and 1714 Defoe worked as a political journalist and theorist for economy. In 1719 he invented the realistic novel and wrote many books in this new style in the following years. One of these novels is Moll Flanders. On April 26th in 1731 Defoe died of a lethargy.
Defoe wrote the novel Moll Flanders in 1722. It is the biography of a criminal woman written in the personal perspective. Such biographies were very popular at that time. The novel is not authentic, only the fact that a pickpocket called Moll King returned to London in 1718 after seven years of banishment gave offence to Defoe to write the novel.
The author himself tells the reader that the story is a true report written in 1683 in which he changed the style and let some morally improper parts out in order not to spoil the reader. It is noticeable that during the whole novel only very few names are mentioned. For explanation Defoe tells that he wanted to protect Moll, for that reason he even made some changes in report and style.
Moll Flanders is born in the prison of Newgate in London. Her mother is declared guilty of robbery and is sent to Virginia. Moll remains alone in the prison until a relative takes her out. In the following time she moves around with a group of gypsies till they leave her at the age of three in Colchester, Essex. An old nurse finds her and takes her to her nursery school where she is taught in devoutness. The good old nurse, as she always used to call her, dies when Moll is 15 years old. A rich family who was acquainted with the nurse takes her in. She gets a good education and is able to lead a nice life.
At the age of 18 Moll looks very beautiful when she is desired by both sons of her family. She starts her first secret love affair with the elder brother, who obviously only wants her as his lover. The younger brother (Robin) makes Moll a proposal for marriage, but she does not want to marry him because she still loves the elder one. Finally she marries Robin because it is the only way for her to keep the affair in secret. After five years of marriage in which they had two children, Robin dies. Moll marries a merchant who wastes their whole money. After two years he has completely ruined his business and is taken to prison. Moll moves with a friend to Redriff and marries the owner of a plantation. For financial reasons they move to Virginia, where her husband also has big plantations. Through the stories of her mother (-in-law) Moll finds out that her husband is her native brother. She cannot bear this situation, so she travels back to England and starts a new life in Bath. Moll has an affair with a rich man, she even has a child from ...


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