Court House. Home of Lucia Harden; an idealized English country estate in Harmouth that contains the valuable Harden Library. After Lucia’s father dies in Italy heavily in debt, she sells the library at an undervalued low price to the father of the gifted young poet Savage Keith Rickman, who then begins an eight-year quest to earn enough money to return the library to its rightful owner and nearly dies from starvation and overwork in the process. At Court House, Rickman discovers both his love for Lucia and, simultaneously, his greatest poetic inspiration. The emergence of this inspiration in a rural, natural environment establishes an urban/pastoral motif that runs throughout the novel.
*London. City in which Keith Rickman and several other characters live and work. It is often referred to throughout the novel as simply “the City.” Rickman’s poetic inspiration, like many of the so-called Decadent poets of the 1890’s, comes first from the urban environment of London. Rickman both works and socializes within the world of literary magazines and journalism on Fleet Street, where petty rivalries between the editor of The Planet and the editor of Metropolis damage Rickman’s potential literary success. Gossip about Rickman is often circulated at the Junior Journalists’ Club, an organization of newspapermen, editors, and literary critics located in the Strand. The city also represents the source of Rickman’s struggles between his artistic...
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