Moll Flanders

Moll Flanders

Paperback(Mass Market Paperback - Signet Classic Edition)

View All Available Formats & Editions

Temporarily Out of Stock Online

Eligible for FREE SHIPPING


Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe

The conditions of Moll Flanders' birth could not have been more depressing. Her mother was a petty thief who was caught and sent to the notorious Newgate prison in London. It was in that prison that Moll was born. Deemed an orphan, Moll was later sent to apprentice as a servant with a respectable family. Moll has designs on a life better than serving others. But as she discovers, independence and fortune are not easy to come by. A string of dreadful misfortunes--including five luckless marriages--force Moll into the streets, where her only means of support is a life of crime.

But Moll refuses to give up: she will succeed!

Moll Flanders is a triumphant portrait of a strong-willed woman determined to make her own way in eighteenth-century England.||

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780451524591
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 08/21/1986
Series: Signet Classics Series
Edition description: Signet Classic Edition
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 4.26(w) x 6.80(h) x 0.59(d)

About the Author

Daniel Defoe was born Daniel Foe in London in 1660. It was perhaps, ineveitable that Defoe, an outspoken man, would become a political journalist. As a Puritan he believed God had given him a mission to print the truth, that is, to proselytize on religion and politics, and in fact, he became a prolific pamphleteer satirizing the hypocrisies of both Church and State. Defoe admired William III, and his poem The True-Born Englishman (1701) won him the King's friendship. But an ill-timed satire on High Church extremists, The Shortest Way with the Dissenters, published during Queen Anne's reign, resulted in his being pilloried and imprisoned for seditious libel in 1703.

At fifty-nine Defoe turned to fiction, completing The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe (1719), partly based on the saga of Alexander Selkirk, a Scottish sailor; Moll Flanders (1722); Colonel Jack (1722); A Journal of the Plague Years (1722); and Roxana or the Fortunate Mistress (1724).

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

Moll Flanders 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
'It is true that the original of this story is put into new words' thus Defoe tells us in the Authors Preface that he has re-written the original manuscript delivered to him by Moll. Of course since there was no original manuscript or no real Moll , except for a model for her he might of met while in Newgate prison, Defoe is creating fiction within fiction. This is just one of the many devices Defoe uses to depict Moll to the reader as a real person not just a literary creation. To put it into terms of an artist's canvas on easel, many writers of classic masterworks are say like Monet or Picasso, Defoe's work reminds of Rembrandt. Moll comes to life in these pages and seems to be a person of history instead of fiction. Moll Flanders is the first English novel. Some would point to Robinson Crusoe written three years prior yet the time before and after the Island in 'Crusoe' seems to fit the Tall Tale genre. Moll Flanders is more of what the 'novel' evolves into. Moll is born in Newgate prison. Her mother, a thief, after pleading her belly and delivering Moll into this world is deported to the colonies in America. Moll is passed around even living and travelling with Gypsies for awhile. During her early years she relies on men to keep her afloat because in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries a woman alone had few good options for survival and Moll is nothing if not a survivor. On into middle age Moll turns thief to make ends meet. In one scene she is going to a house fire to see what can be had in the panic and confusion ,since she had luck that way once before, and a maid throws a mattress out of an upper story and it lands on Moll knocking her out. She is horrified later thinking about what if they threw more goods out onto the mattress, Moll reflects she would have been 'inevitably killed; but I was reserved for further afflictions'. Defoe paints in the moral degradation of the thieving life on all involved including Moll. She is caught finally and rises out of Newgate a penitent heading for America where she does turn her back on crime even though Defoe in his preface tells us she only pretends to be penitent and humble. This novel is a favorite of mine and having made my preference known I will be objective as I can under those circumstances and claim Moll Flanders as Defoe's magnum opus.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Moll Flanders, is an epic following of a womans life from birth to the end of her life. Her character, is deep and moving-you even end up feeling sorry for her even though she does some horrible things in her life she never repents-until the very end.It is an amazing book-defoe is excellent!! Strongly reccomend it-it will move you deeply.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is the earliest novel that is British that I have read. Though long, it is really intersting. The story line is good, but as well, the style used it really neat. Little things like there are no chapter divisions, and there are quotation marks. It is neat discovering these little things, and seeing how writing style has really evolved.
D23 More than 1 year ago
Nice book
Guest More than 1 year ago
A mother's behavior affects the child's behavior as well as their own. The child look up to their parents as role models because they think that their parents do everything the right way and never make any mistakes throughout life. But it is not true that your parents do not make any mistakes because they make mistakes everyday like everyone else does. When anyone who makes a mistake, they usually learn from that mistake and does not do it again. In the novel, Moll Flanders, which was written by Daniel Defoe, the mother was convicted of a felony and then when the daughter, Moll was growing up she got into trouble because she did not know any different. However, the full title of the novel, Moll Flanders gives an appropriate summary of the plot, which was 'The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders, Etc. Who was born in Newgate, and during a life of continuing Variety for Threescore Years, besides her Childhood, was Twelve Year a Whore, five times a Wife(Whereof once to her own brother), Twelve Year a Thief, Eight Years a Transported Felon in Virginia, at last grew Rich, lived Honest and died a Penitent. Written from her own Memorandums.' When Moll was a baby, she was transported to America and she was raised by a kind widow who taught her manners and needlework. Moll was abandoned by her first lover, she then compelled to marry his younger brother. He died after a few years, and she marries a draper who soon flees the country as a fugitive from the law. She marries yet again and moves to America, only to find out that her husband was actually her half-brother. After she found out that she married her half-brother, she left him in disgust and returns to England. Where she becomes the mistress of a man whose wife had went insane. He renounces his affair with Moll after a religious experience. Moll next marriage offer was from a banker whose wife had been cheating on him. But he had to obtain a divorce and meanwhile Moll travels to the country. When she goes back to the country, she marries a rich gentleman in Lancashire. The rich gentleman turned out to be poor as she was and they separated. Moll then returns to marry the banker, who had succeeded in divorcing his wife. He died shortly after they were married. She in poverty for several years and then begins stealing. Moll soon become an expert thief and a local legend. She was eventually caught, imprisoned, and sentenced to death. She reunited with her Lancashire husband in prison at Newgate, who was also been arrested. They both got their sentences reduced, and they are transported to the colonies, where they begin a new life as plantation owners. When she was in America, she rediscovered her brother and her son and claims the inheritance her mother had left her. Prosperous and repentant, she returns with her husband to England at the age of seventy. In conclusion, Moll Flanders, the novel did have an affect on Moll Flander's behavior. I did not care for this novel because the mother was not around to raise her child. I also did not care for this novel because of all the marriages, divorces, and crimes that Moll Flanders committed to. I do not believe in that kind of life style.