The war between the sexes and the generations, myths of Eden and Utopia, and the psychology of sexual jealousy and repression are explored by Meredith in this, his wonderfully ironic and impassioned first novel. The story concerns Sir Austin Feverel's misconceived attempts to educate his son Richard according to a system of his own devising. Embodied in Sir Austin's anonymously published 'The Pilgrim's Scrip', the system is based on theories of sexual restraint and finds little favour with Richard. Although the wider Victorian reading public was not amused, this novel won a cult following. Now readers can again discover the psychological and formal complexity that make The Ordeal of Richard Feverel one of the most profound, subtle and moving works of English fiction.