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Book - “Two Years Ago”
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Title: Book - “Two Years Ago”
Identifier: 2004.2.314
Donor: Geoffrey Sayers
Item Date: 1890-1910
Creation Date: 2012
Location: Benares Historic House

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Description: A book with a red linen cover. The cover is impressed on the front with gold decoration in the form of a rectangular garland of leaves and berries enclosing the title, "Two Years Ago" and author "Chas. Kingsley". The spine is similarly decorated with gold decoration and in addition to the title and author, includes the name of the publisher, "Ward, Lock & Co. Limited".

Charles Kingsley (1819-1875) was the son of a vicar. In 1842 he became a curate. As a young man, he was influenced by "The Kingdom of Christ" (1838) by Frederick Denison Maurice. In the book Maurice argued that politics and religion are inseparable and that the church should be involved in addressing social questions. Kingsley became a supporter of Chartism and after their Chartist Petition of 1848 was rejected by the House of Commons, he joined with Frederick Denison Maurice and Thomas Hughes to form the Christian Socialist movement. The men discussed how the Church could help to prevent revolution by tackling what they considered were the reasonable grievances of the working class. The Christian Socialists published two journals which Kingsley contributed several articles to under the pseudonym of Parson Lot. Among his other projects were a night school and the formation of working men's associations. In "Two Years Ago" Kingsley wrote about how poor sanitary conditions and public apathy cause an outbreak of apathy. Kingsley also held the post of Professor of Modern History at Cambridge University between 1860-69. REF: visited July 25, 2007.

Ward, Lock & Co. was created in 1854 by Ebenezer Ward and George Lock in London. In the early 1880’s the company began publishing Shaw’s well known series of tourist guides , known as the “Red Guides”. James Bowden joined the company in the 1880’s and it became known as Ward, Lock & Bowden Company. Between 1882 and 1890 the company opened offices in New York,, Melbourne and Toronto. In 1897 when Bowden retired the company was renamed as “Ward Lock & Co Ltd and it continued to operate under that name through the 20th century. It is now part of the “Octopus Publishing Group”.
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