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The Infernal Quixote (1801) is an enjoyable comic romp in which Charles Lucas engages directly with the most pressing political issues of his day and establishes himself as one of the most forthright of all the anti-Jacobin writers. Dealing with many aspects of the debates that raged around the writings of Burke, Paine, Wollstonecraft, Godwin, and others, the novel paints a vivid picture of the political and social anxieties prevalent in Britain during the 1790s. Lucas's work is particularly remarkable for depicting meetings of the London Corresponding Society and the secret "Illuminati" society, and for being the first novel to be set amidst the Irish Rebellion of 1798.
This Broadview edition is accompanied by a critical introduction and a rich selection of primary source materials, including a prospectus for the notorious Minerva Press, a contemporary review, publications of The United Irishmen, and excerpts from Augustin Barruel's "Memoirs Illustrating the History of Jacobinism" and from the writings of William Godwin.
Charles Lucas: A Brief Chronology
A Note on the Text
The Infernal Quixote
Appendix A: From Charles Lucas, Gwelygordd; or, the Child of Sin. A Tale of Welsh Origin (1820)
Appendix B: An Advertisement for the Minerva Press (1794)
Appendix C: From William Godwin, Enquiry Concerning Political Justice, and its Influence on Morals and Happiness (1796)
Appendix D: A Contemporary Review (Critical Review, September 1801)
Appendix E: A London Corresponding Society handbill (1795)
Appendix F: From Augustin Barruel's Memoirs, Illustrating the History of Jacobinism (1797-98)
Appendix G: Publications of the United Irishmen
1. A United Irishmen pamphlet from 1791
2. A United Irishmen handbill distributed in 1798
Select Bibliography and Works Cited