|Born||)24 April 1815
London, United Kingdom
|Died||6 December 1882) (aged 67)
London, United Kingdom
|Occupation||novelist; postal worker|
Anthony Trollope (pron.: ; 24 April 1815 – 6 December 1882) was one of the most successful, prolific and respected English novelists of the Victorian era. Some of his best-loved works, collectively known as the Chronicles of Barsetshire, revolve around the imaginary county of Barsetshire. He also wrote perceptive novels on political, social, and gender issues, and on other topical matters.
Noted fans have included Sir Alec Guinness (who never travelled without a Trollope novel), former British Prime Ministers Harold Macmillan and Sir John Major, economist John Kenneth Galbraith, English judge Lord Denning, American novelists Sue Grafton and Dominick Dunne, American author Robert Caro  and soap opera writer Harding Lemay. Trollope's literary reputation dipped somewhat during the last years of his life, but he regained the esteem of critics by the mid-twentieth century.
Thomas Anthony Trollope, Anthony's father, was a barrister. Though a clever and well-educated man and a Fellow of New College, Oxford, he failed at the bar due to his bad temper. In addition, his ventures into farming proved unprofitable, and he lost an expected inheritance when an elderly childless uncle re-married and had children. As a son of landed gentry he wanted his sons to be raised as gentlemen and to attend Oxford or Cambridge. Anthony Trollope suffered much misery in his boyhood owing to the disparity between his family's social background and his own comparative poverty.
Born in London, Anthony attended Harrow School as a free day pupil for three years from the age of seven because his father's farm, acquired for that reason, lay in that neighbourhood. After a spell at a private school at Sunbury, he followed his father and two older brothers to Winchester College, where he remained for three years. He returned to Harrow as a day-boy to reduce the cost of his education. Trollope had some very miserable experiences at these two public schools. They ranked as two of the most élite schools in England, but Trollope had no money and no friends, and was bullied a great deal. At the age of twelve, he fantasized about suicide. However, he also daydreamed, constructing elaborate imaginary worlds.
In 1827, his mother Frances Trollope moved to America with Trollope's three younger siblings, to Nashoba Commune. After that failed, she opened a bazaar in Cincinnati, which proved unsuccessful. Thomas Trollope joined them for a short time before returning to the farm at Harrow, but Anthony stayed in England throughout. His mother returned in 1831 and rapidly made a name for herself as a writer, soon earning a good income. His father's affairs, however, went from bad to worse. He gave up his legal practice entirely and failed to make enough income from farming to pay rents to his landlord, Lord Northwick. In 1834 he fled to Belgium to avoid arrest for debt. The whole family moved to a house near Bruges, where they lived entirely on Frances's earnings.
In Belgium, Anthony was offered a commission in an Austrian cavalry regiment. In order to accept it, he needed to learn French and German; he had a year in which to acquire these languages. To learn them without expense to himself and his family, he took a position as an usher in a school in Brussels, which position made him the tutor of thirty boys. After six weeks of this, however, he received an offer of a clerkship in the General Post Office, obtained through a family friend. He returned to London in the autumn of 1834 to take up this post. Thomas Trollope died in the following year.
According to Trollope, "the first seven years of my official life were neither creditable to myself nor useful to the public service." At the Post Office, he acquired a reputation for unpunctuality and insubordination. A debt of £12 to a tailor fell into the hands of a moneylender and grew to over £200; the lender regularly visited Trollope at his work to demand payments. Trollope hated his work, but saw no alternatives and lived in constant fear of dismissal.
Move to Ireland 
In 1841, an opportunity to escape offered itself. A postal surveyor's clerk in central Ireland was reported as being incompetent and in need of replacement. The position was not regarded as a desirable one at all; but Trollope, in debt and in trouble at his office, volunteered for it; and his supervisor, William Maberly, eager to be rid of him, appointed him to the position.
Trollope based himself in Banagher, County Offaly, with his work consisting largely of inspection tours in Connacht. Although he had arrived with a bad character from London, his new supervisor resolved to judge him on his merits; by Trollope's account, within a year he had the reputation of a valuable public servant. His salary and travel allowance went much farther in Ireland than they had in London, and he found himself enjoying a measure of prosperity. He took up fox hunting, which he pursued enthusiastically for the next three decades. His professional role as a post-office surveyor brought him into contact with Irish people, and he found them pleasant company: "The Irish people did not murder me, nor did they even break my head. I soon found them to be good-humoured, clever—the working classes very much more intelligent than those of England—economical and hospitable."
At the watering place of Kingstown, Trollope met Rose Heseltine, the daughter of a Rotherham bank manager. They became engaged when he had been in Ireland for a year; because of Trollope's debts and her lack of a fortune, they were unable to marry until 1844. Soon after their marriage, Trollope transferred to another postal district in the south of Ireland, and the family moved to Clonmel.
Early works 
Though Trollope had decided to become a novelist, he had accomplished very little writing during his first three years in Ireland. At the time of his marriage, he had only written the first of three volumes of his first novel, The Macdermots of Ballycloran. Within a year of his marriage, he finished that work.
Trollope began writing on the numerous long train trips around Ireland he had to take to carry out his postal duties. Setting very firm goals about how much he would write each day, he eventually became one of the most prolific writers of all time. He wrote his earliest novels while working as a Post Office inspector, occasionally dipping into the "lost-letter" box for ideas.
Significantly, many of his earliest novels have Ireland as their setting—natural enough given his background, but unlikely to enjoy warm critical reception, given the contemporary English attitudes towards Ireland. It has been pointed out by critics that Trollope's view of Ireland separates him from many of the other Victorian novelists. Some critics claim that Ireland did not influence Trollope as much as his experience in England, and that the society in Ireland harmed him as a writer, especially since Ireland was experiencing the Great Famine during his time there. Such critics were dismissed as holding bigoted opinions against Ireland and failing to recognize Trollope's true attachment to the country.
Trollope wrote four novels about Ireland. Two were written during the Great Famine of the mid-19th century, while the third deals with the famine as a theme (The Macdermots of Ballycloran, The Landleaguers, and Castle Richmond, respectively). The Macdermots of Ballycloran was written while he was staying in the village of Drumsna, County Leitrim. A fourth, The Kellys and the O'Kellys (1848) is a humorous comparison of the romantic pursuits of the landed gentry (Francis O'Kelly, Lord Ballindine) and his Catholic tenant (Martin Kelly). Two short stories deal with Ireland ("The O'Conors of Castle Conor, County Mayo" and "Father Giles of Ballymoy" ). It has been argued by some critics that these works seek to unify an Irish and British identity, instead of viewing the two as distinct. Even as an Englishman in Ireland, Trollope was still able to attain what he saw as essential to being an "Irish writer": possessed, obsessed, and "mauled" by Ireland.
The reception of the Irish works left much to be desired. Henry Colburn wrote to Trollope, "It is evident that readers do not like novels on Irish subjects as well as on others." In particular, magazines such as the New Monthly Magazine, which wrote reviews that attacked the Irish for their actions during the famine, were representative of the dismissal by English readers of any work written about the Irish.
Authorial success 
In 1851, Trollope was sent to England, charged with investigating and reorganizing rural mail delivery in a portion of the country. The two-year mission took him over much of Great Britain, often on horseback. Trollope describes this time as "two of the happiest years of my life".
In the course of it, he visited Salisbury Cathedral; and there, according to his autobiography, he conceived the plot of The Warden, which became the first of the six Barsetshire novels. His postal work delayed the beginning of writing for a year; the novel was published in 1855, in an edition of 1000 copies, with Trollope receiving half of the profits: £9 8s. 8d. in 1855, and £10 15s. 1d. in 1856. Although the profits were not large, the book received notices in the press, and brought Trollope to the attention of the novel-reading public.
He immediately began work on Barchester Towers, the second Barsetshire novel; upon its publication in 1857, he received an advance payment of £100 (about £7,500 in 2012 consumer pounds) against his share of the profits. Like The Warden, Barchester Towers did not obtain large sales, but it helped to establish Trollope's reputation. In his autobiography, Trollope writes, "It achieved no great reputation, but it was one of the novels which novel readers were called upon to read." For the following novel, The Three Clerks, he was able to sell the copyright for a lump sum of £250; he preferred this to waiting for a share of future profits.
Return to England 
Although Trollope had been happy and comfortable in Ireland, he felt that as an author, he should live within easy reach of London. In 1859, he sought and obtained a position in the Post Office as Surveyor to the Eastern District, comprising Essex, Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire, Huntingdonshire, and most of Hertfordshire. Later in that year he moved to Waltham Cross, about 12 miles (19 km) from London in Hertfordshire, where he lived until 1871.
In late 1859, Trollope learned of preparations for the release of the Cornhill Magazine, to be published by George Murray Smith and edited by William Makepeace Thackeray. He wrote to the latter, offering to provide short stories for the new magazine. Thackeray and Smith both responded: the former urging Trollope to contribute, the latter offering £1000 for a novel, provided that a substantial part of it could be available to the printer within six weeks. Trollope offered Smith Castle Richmond, which he was then writing; but Smith declined to accept an Irish story, and suggested a novel dealing with English clerical life as had Barchester Towers. Trollope then devised the plot of Framley Parsonage, setting it near Barchester so that he could make use of characters from the Barsetshire novels.:207–08
Framley Parsonage proved enormously popular, establishing Trollope's reputation with the novel-reading public and amply justifying the high price that Smith had paid for it. The early connection to Cornhill also brought Trollope into the London circle of artists, writers, and intellectuals, not least among whom were Smith and Thackeray.:209
By the mid-1860s, Trollope had reached a fairly senior position within the Post Office hierarchy, despite ongoing differences with Rowland Hill, who was at that time Chief Secretary to the Postmaster General. Postal history credits him with introducing the pillar box (the ubiquitous bright red mail-box) in the United Kingdom. He was earning a substantial income from his novels. He had overcome the awkwardness of his youth, made good friends in literary circles, and hunted enthusiastically.
When Hill left the Post Office in 1864, Trollope's brother-in-law John Tilley, who was then Under-Secretary to the Postmaster General, was appointed to the vacated position. Trollope applied for Tilley's old post, but was passed over in favor of a subordinate. In the fall of 1867, he resigned his position at the Post Office, having by that time saved enough to generate an income equal to the pension he would lose by leaving before the age of 60.
Beverley campaign 
Trollope had long dreamt of taking a seat in the House of Commons. As a civil servant, however, he was ineligible for such a position. His resignation from the Post Office removed this disability, and he almost immediately began seeking a seat for which he might run. In 1868, he agreed to stand as a Liberal candidate in the borough of Beverley, in the East Riding of Yorkshire.
Party leaders apparently took advantage of Trollope's eagerness to run and willingness to spend money on a campaign. Beverley had a long history of vote-buying and of intimidation by employers and others. Every election since 1857 had been followed by a petition alleging corruption, and it was estimated that 300 of the 1100 voters in 1868 would sell their votes. The task of a Liberal candidate was not to win the election, but to give the Conservative candidates an opportunity to display overt corruption, which could then be used to disqualify them.
Trollope described his period of campaigning in Beverley as "the most wretched fortnight of my manhood". He spent a total of £400 on his campaign. The election was held on 17 November 1868; the novelist finished last of four candidates, with the victory going to the two Conservatives. A petition was filed, and a Royal Commission investigated the circumstances of the election; its findings of extensive and widespread corruption drew nationwide attention, and led to the disfranchisement of the borough in 1870. The fictional Percycross election in Ralph the Heir is closely based on the Beverley campaign.
Later years 
After the Beverley loss, Trollope concentrated entirely on his literary career. While continuing to produce novels rapidly, he also edited the St Paul's Magazine, which published several of his novels in serial form.
In 1871, Trollope made his first trip to Australia, arriving in Melbourne in July, with his wife and their cook. The trip was made to visit their younger son, Frederic, who was a sheep farmer near Grenfell, New South Wales. He wrote his novel Lady Anna during the voyage. In Australia, he spent a year and two days "descending mines, mixing with shearers and rouseabouts, riding his horse into the loneliness of the bush, touring lunatic asylums, and exploring coast and plain by steamer and stagecoach". Despite this, the Australian press was uneasy, fearing he would misrepresent Australia in his writings. This fear was based on rather negative writings about America by his mother, Fanny, and by Charles Dickens. On his return Trollope published a book, Australia and New Zealand (1873). It contained both positive and negative comments. On the positive side it included finding a comparative absence of class consciousness, and praising aspects of Perth, Melbourne, Hobart and Sydney. However, he was negative about Adelaide's river, the towns of Bendigo and Ballarat, and the Aboriginal people. What most angered the Australian papers, though, were his comments "accusing Australians of being braggarts".
Trollope returned to Australia in 1875 to help his son close down his failed farming business. He found that the resentment created by his accusations of bragging remained. Even when he died in 1882, Australian papers still "smouldered", referring yet again to these accusations, and refusing to fully praise or recognise his achievements.
In 1880, Trollope moved to the village of South Harting in West Sussex. He spent some time in Ireland in the early 1880s researching his last, unfinished, novel, The Landleaguers. It is said that he was extremely distressed by the violence of the Land War. He died in London in 1882, and is buried in Kensal Green Cemetery, near the grave of his contemporary Wilkie Collins.
Works and reputation 
Trollope's first major success came with The Warden (1855) — the first of six novels set in the fictional county of "Barsetshire" (often collectively referred to as the Chronicles of Barsetshire), usually dealing with the clergy. Barchester Towers (1857) has probably become the best-known of these. Trollope's other major series, the Palliser novels, concerned itself with politics, with the wealthy, industrious Plantagenet Palliser and his delightfully spontaneous, even richer wife Lady Glencora usually featuring prominently (although, as with the Barsetshire series, many other well-developed characters populated each novel).
Trollope's popularity and critical success diminished in his later years, but he continued to write prolifically, and some of his later novels have acquired a good reputation. In particular, critics generally acknowledge the sweeping satire The Way We Live Now (1875) as his masterpiece. In all, Trollope wrote forty-seven novels, as well as dozens of short stories and a few books on travel.
After his death, Trollope's Autobiography appeared and was a bestseller in London. Trollope's downfall in the eyes of the critics stemmed largely from this volume. Even during his writing career, reviewers tended increasingly to shake their heads over his prodigious output (the same complaint was targeted at Charles Dickens), but when Trollope revealed that he strictly adhered to a daily writing quota, he confirmed his critics' worst fears. The Muse, in their view, might prove immensely prolific, but she would never ever follow a schedule. Furthermore, Trollope admitted that he wrote for money; at the same time he called the disdain of money false and foolish. The Muse, claimed the critics, should not be aware of money.
Julian Hawthorne, an American writer, critic and friend of Trollope, while praising him as a man, calling him "a credit to England and to human nature, and ...[deserving] to be numbered among the darlings of mankind", also says that "he has done great harm to English fictitious literature by his novels".
Henry James also expressed mixed opinions of Trollope. The young James wrote some scathing reviews of Trollope's novels (The Belton Estate, for instance, he called "a stupid book, without a single thought or idea in it ... a sort of mental pabulum"). He also made it clear that he disliked Trollope's narrative method; Trollope's cheerful interpolations into his novels about how his storylines could take any twist their author wanted did not appeal to James' sense of artistic integrity. However, James thoroughly appreciated Trollope's attention to realistic detail, as he wrote in an essay shortly after the novelist's death:
"His [Trollope's] great, his inestimable merit was a complete appreciation of the usual. ... [H]e felt all daily and immediate things as well as saw them; felt them in a simple, direct, salubrious way, with their sadness, their gladness, their charm, their comicality, all their obvious and measurable meanings. ... Trollope will remain one of the most trustworthy, though not one of the most eloquent, of the writers who have helped the heart of man to know itself. ... A race is fortunate when it has a good deal of the sort of imagination—of imaginative feeling—that had fallen to the share of Anthony Trollope; and in this possession our English race is not poor."
James disliked Trollope's habit of addressing readers directly. However, Trollope may have had some influence on James's own work; the earlier novelist's treatment of family tensions, especially between fathers and daughters, may resonate in some of James' novels. For instance, Alice Vavasor and her selfish father in the first of the so-called Palliser novels, Can You Forgive Her?, may pre-figure Kate Croy and her own insufferable father, Lionel, in The Wings of the Dove.
Writers such as Thackeray, Eliot and Collins admired and befriended Trollope, and George Eliot noted that she could not have embarked on so ambitious a project as Middlemarch without the precedent set by Trollope in his own novels of the fictional — yet thoroughly alive — county of Barsetshire.
W. H. Auden wrote of Trollope as follows: "Of all novelists in any country, Trollope best understands the role of money. Compared with him, even Balzac is too romantic." Contemporaries of Trollope praised his understanding of the quotidian world of institutions, official life, and daily business; he is one of the few novelists who find the office a creative environment.
As trends in the world of the novel moved increasingly towards subjectivity and artistic experimentation, Trollope's standing with critics suffered. In the 1940s, Trollopians made attempts to resurrect his reputation; he enjoyed a critical renaissance in the 1960s, and again in the 1990s. Some critics today have a particular interest in Trollope's portrayal of women — he caused remark even in his own day for his deep insight and sensitivity to the inner conflicts caused by the position of women in Victorian society.
Recently, interest in Trollope has increased. A Trollope Society flourishes in the United Kingdom, as does its sister society in the United States. In 2011, the University of Kansas' Department of English, in collaboration with the Hall Center for the Humanities and in partnership with The Fortnightly Review, began awarding an annual Trollope Prize. The Prize was established to focus attention on Trollope's work and career.
List of works 
- Lunch with the FT: Robert Caro
- Barbara, the childless wife of Anthony Trollope's great-uncle, Adolphus Meetkerke of Julians Hertfordshire, died in 1817. Adolphus (then aged 64) remarried in 1818 and they had five children.
- Casewick, Lincolnshire, the Trollope family seat purchased in 1621
- The (leasehold) farm was named by the Trollopes 'Julians' after the grand estate they were destined to fail to inherit. Trollope used this Julians at Harrow as the location for the school in his novel Orley Farm. Coincidentally Julians later became used as a school and Trollope consented to that school being named Orley Farm School.
- Trollope, Anthony (1883). An Autobiography. Chapter 2. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Anthony Trollope: Biography. The Trollope Society. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Trollope (1883). Chapter 3. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Trollope (1883). Chapter 4. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Super, R. H. (1981). Trollope in the Post Office. Ann Arbor: Univ. of Michigan Press. pp. 16–45.
- "Anthony Trollope". Ulster History Circle. Retrieved 2010-07-07.
- Edwards, Owen Dudley. "Anthony Trollope, the Irish Writer. Nineteenth-Century Fiction, Vol. 38, No. 1 (Jun. 1983), p. 1
- Trollope: A Commentary London: Constable 1927 p. 136
- "Trollope and the Matter of Ireland," Anthony Trollope, ed. Tony Bareham, London: Vision Press 1980, pp. 24–25
- Terry, R.C. Anthony Trollope: The Artist in Hiding London: Macmillan 1977 pp. 175–200
- "Welcome to Drumsna". GoIreland. Archived from the original on 12 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-25.
- published in Harper's May 1860
- published in Argosy May 1866
- Trollope, The Spotted Dog, and Other Stories, ed. Herbert Van Thal. London: Pan Books 1950
- Edwards p. 3
- "Irishness" in Writers and Politics. London: Chatto and Windus 1965, pp. 97–100
- New Monthly Magazine August 1848
- Trollope: The Critical Heritage ed. Donald Smalley London: Routledge 1969, p. 555
- Trollope (1883). Chapter 5. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- The dates in Trollope's An Autobiography, chapter 5, are inconsistent: he states that he began writing The Warden in July 1853, that he "recommenced it" at the end of 1852, and that he finished it in the autumn of 1853.
- Trollope (1883). Chapter 6. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Trollope (1883). Chapter 20. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Trollope (1883). Chapter 8. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- "Anthony Trollope". Lowewood Museum. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Lee, Sidney (1901). "Memoir of George Smith". In Sidney Lee. Dictionary of National Biography, 1901 supplement. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
- Sadleir, Michael (1927). Trollope: A Commentary. Farrar, Straus and Company.
- Moody, Ellen. Framley Parsonage introduction. Ellen Moody's Website: Mostly on English and Continental and Women's Literature. Retrieved 2011-04-07.
- Trollope (1883). Chapter 15. Retrieved 2010-07-02.
- Trollope (1883), chapter 16. Retrieved 2010-05-21.
- Super, R. H. (1988). The Chronicler of Barsetshire. University of Michigan Press. pp. 251–5. Retrieved 2010-05-19.
- Modern Beverley: Political and Social History, 1835–1918. British History Online. Retrieved 2010-05-20.
- Starck, Nigel (2008) "Anthony Trollope's travels and travails in 1871 Australia", National Library of Australia News, XIX (1), p. 19
- Starck, p. 20
- Starck, p. 21
- Stanford, Jane, 'That Irishman: The Life and Times of John O'Connor Power', Part Three, 'The Fenian is the Artist', pp. 123–124, The History Press Ireland, May 2011, ISBN 978-1-84588-698-1 [Amazon-US | Amazon-UK]
- "Literary Gossip". The Week : a Canadian journal of politics, literature, science and arts. 1 1: 13. Dec 6, 1883.
- Hawthorne, Julian (1887). Confessions and Criticisms, pp. 160–62. Ticknor and Company.
- James, Henry (1888). Partial Portraits, pp. 100–01, 133. Macmillan and Co.
- Quoted in Wintle, Justin & Kenin, Richard, eds. (1978). The Dictionary of Biographical Quotation, p. 742. Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd.
- Ceri Sullivan, Literature in the Public Service: Sublime Bureaucracy (2013), ch. 3.
- Literary allusions in Trollope's novels have been identified and traced by Professor James A. Means, in two articles that appeared in The Victorian Newsletter, (vols. 78 and 82) in 1990 and 1992 respectively.
- Anthony Trollope – Comprehensive summaries of all of Trollope's plots and characters as well as information on all things Trollopian
- Trollope Society website
- Works by Anthony Trollope at Project Gutenberg
- Works by Anthony Trollope at Adelaide University E books
- Classical references in the Barsetshire series of novels, researched by students from Hendrix College.
- Vanity Fair – Mrs. Trollope's America
- Collection of portraits of Trollope at the National Portrait Gallery, London
- The Trollope Prize at the University of Kansas.
- The Fortnightly Review Prospectus by Anthony Trollope
- Anthony Trollope at Find a Grave
- Anonymous (1873). Cartoon portraits and biographical sketches of men of the day. Illustrated by Frederick Waddy. London: Tinsley Brothers. pp. 68–70. Retrieved 2011-01-06.
- Stephen, Leslie (1902). "Anthony Trollope". Studies of a Biographer 4. London: Duckworth & Co. pp. 168–205.