This beloved novel is a keenly observed portrait of small-town Victorian life. APPENDICES: A - Pre and Post Cranford Texts; Elizabeth Gaskell, "The ... Show synopsis This beloved novel is a keenly observed portrait of small-town Victorian life. APPENDICES: A - Pre and Post Cranford Texts; Elizabeth Gaskell, "The Last Generation in England"; and, Elizabeth Gaskell, "The Cage at Cranford"; B - Cranford Correspondence, The Letters of Charles Dickens, The Letters of Mrs. Gaskell, The Letters of Charlotte Bronte; C - Contemporary Reviews, Tributes to Mrs. Gaskell; D - Reading in Cranford; Samuel Johnson, Rasselas (1759) and The Rambler, No. 39 (1750); Charles Dickens, "The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club" (1836-37), Alfred, Lord Tennyson, "Locksley Hall," (1842); E - Industrialization and Moral Responsibility; Adam Smith, "The Theory of Moral Sentiments", (1759), Maria Edgeworth, "The Parent's Assistant", (1796), Elizabeth Gaskell, "Mary Barton", (1848); and, F - Class, Conduct, and Etiquette; Charles Day, "Hints on Etiquette and the Usages of Society with a Glance at Bad Habits", (1836); Anon., "Etiquette for Ladies: Eighty Maxims on Dress, Manners, and Accomplishments", (1837). It also includes: G - Economies Political and Domestic; Sarah Stickney Ellis, "The Women of England, Their Social Duties and Domestic Habits" (1839), Eliza Acton, "Modern Cookery in All its Branches, Reduced to a System of Easy Practice for the Use of Private Families", (1845), Isabella Beeton, "Beeton's Book of Household Management", (1856), J.S. Mill, "Principles of Political Economy", (1848), Charles Lamb, "Essays of Elia" (1823), Mary Russell Mitford, "Our Village", (1832), and, George Eliot, "Scenes of Clerical Life", (1857); H - Illustrations; Fashion: Images from "Punch", Cranford Ladies: Photographs from Mrs. Ellis H. Chadwick's "Mrs. Gaskell: Haunts, Homes, and Stories", 1910, Hogarth: "A Rake's Progress", and, Illustrations from the 1864 edition of "Cranford". The country town of Cranford is home to a diverse range of characters, whose seemingly uneventful lives are full of conflicts, failures, and unexpected connections. Miss Matty Jenkyns, the novel's main character, is a 'spinster' in straitened financial circumstances after her bank fails, but who finds a way out of her troubles with her friends' help and her own ingenuity. The novel's representation of a world at once static and changing, isolated yet vulnerable to the conflicts in the outside world, makes it enduringly popular and relevant. This edition provides a rich assortment of historical materials to put the novel in context, including Gaskell's letters while writing the novel, excerpts from texts read by the characters, illustrations from the novel and from contemporary periodicals, and other Victorian writings on industrialization etiquette, and domestic life.