Places Discussed

Windy Corner

Windy Corner. Home of Lucy Honeychurch and her mother and brother. Windy Corner is located near Summer Street, in the Surrey hills. The Honeychurches live in suburbia, as did E. M. Forster for much of his life, close to London but outside it. Surrey is famous as a recreation destination. As he indicates in the title, Forster considered rooms within houses to be symbolically important places: The rooms in the boxy Honeychurch house are protected from the outside by heavy curtains and filled with solid Victorian furniture. They do not have views. Views are to be had outside on the grounds, or, for those ready to look, within.

Pension Bertolini

Pension Bertolini (pan-see-OHN ber-TOH-lee-nee). Tourist lodge on the River Arno, in Florence, which caters to an English clientele. The Bertolini is based on a real pension in which Forster stayed with his mother on his first trip to Italy in 1901-1902. The pension is run by a Cockney woman, and, with its drawing room and pictures of Queen Victoria and Alfred, Lord Tennyson, on the walls, the hostel is calculated to make the English tourist feel at home. As in Forster’s other novels, it is abroad that members of various levels of English society, in particular the middle classes, seem to meet. The room to which Lucy is eventually assigned has a beautiful view of the river and the hills beyond. This view entices her out of the pension and into the dangers and...

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Historical Context

Edwardian Age
King Edward VII, known as Bertie, ascended the throne at the death of his mother, Queen Victoria, in 1901. Bertie...

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Literary Style

Leitmotif
A term that literary criticism borrows from music describes the technical repetition of key phrases or ideas in...

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Compare and Contrast

1908: Based on an arrangement with Russia, Austria annexes Bosnia and Herzegovina. This disrupts Serbia's plans for a Greater Serbia...

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Topics for Further Study

Forster's theory of marital comradeship has been said to be a homosexual viewpoint masked by a heterosexual story. Do you agree or disagree?...

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Media Adaptations

In 1950, Stephen Tait and Kenneth Allcott adapted A Room with a View to the stage. The play was produced in Cambridge and published by...

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What Do I Read Next?

The first novel of Forster's Italian series, Where Angels Fear to Tread (1905), sequentially follows from A Room with a View....

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Bibliography and Further Reading

Sources
Allen, Walter, The Modern Novel, Dutton, 1964, pp. 36-7.

Crewes, Frederick C., "Comic Spirit," in his...

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Bibliography

(Great Characters in Literature)

Dowling, David. Bloomsbury Aesthetics and the Novels of Forster and Woolf. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1985. Demonstrates the iconographic significance of the paintings mentioned in the novel. Analyzes the change that Lucy Honeychurch undergoes through her meetings with the Emersons. Points out Cecil Vyse’s attempts to place her on a pedestal.

Furbank, P. N. E. M. Forster: A Life. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1978. Definitive biography: detailed, well-written, and copiously illustrated. Demonstrates how a trip Forster made to Florence in late 1901 inspired him to attempt a novel about English tourists in Italy....

(The entire section is 266 words.)