EPUB ✹ The Monk Author Matthew Gregory Lewis – Prestigelakesidehabitat.info


The Monk Lucifer stood before him a second time He borrowed the Seraph s form to deceive Ambrosio He appeared in all that ugliness, which since his fall from heaven had been his portion His blasted limbs still bore marks of the Almighty s thunder A swarthy darkness spread itself over his gigantic form His hands and feet were armed with long Talons Fury glared in his eyes, which might have struck the bravest heart with terror Over his huge shoulders waved two enormous sable wings and his hair was Lucifer stood before him a second time He borrowed the Seraph s form to deceive Ambrosio He appeared in all that ugliness, which since his fall from heaven had been his portion His blasted limbs still bore marks of the Almighty s thunder A swarthy darkness spread itself over his gigantic form His hands and feet were armed with long Talons Fury glared in his eyes, which might have struck the bravest heart with terror Over his huge shoulders waved two enormous sable wings and his hair was supplied by living snakes, which twined themselves round his brows with frightful hissings In one hand He held a roll of parchment, and in the other an iron pen Still the lightning flashed around him, and the Thunder with repeated bursts, seemed to announce the dissolution of nature How does Ambrosio the most pious, the most venerated monk in all of Madrid find himself at this point bargaining with Lucifer for the tattered remains of his blackened soulHis Brother Monks, regarding him as a Superior BeingThey were persuaded, that what He did must be rightHis monastic seclusion had till now been in his favour, since it gave him no room for discovering his bad qualities The superiority of his talents raised him too far above his Companions to permit his being jealous of them His exemplary piety, persuasive eloquence, and pleasing manners had secured him universal Esteem, and consequently He had no injuries to revenge His Ambition was justified by his acknowledged merit, and his pride considered as nothan proper confidence He never saw, much less conversed with the other sex He was ignorant of the pleasures in Woman s power to bestow Ambrosio had been left on the monastery doorstep when he was too young to tell his tale and had never known a moment of the world beyond those monastic walls Because of these unique circumstances he had never been exposed to temptation, vice, sin or the charms of the female form Now the upper class women did find his eloquence when he gave sermons so enticing that he quickly became the most popular monk for hearing confessions Which I often thought that one of the bonuses of being a member of the cloth would be to hear all the juicy details of confession Now don t hold anything back young lady salvation is in the details I digress My point is that even with his sheltered upbringing he had a good idea what all those people were getting up to out there in the regular world, but he had an almost scientific detachment from the conception and the temptations of sin The downfall of Ambrosio was just too tempting for Lucifer He sends Rosario to the monastery to be Ambrosio s assistance Rosario keeps his face hidden under a cowl and makes himself indispensable to Ambrosio After he has gained the trust of the monk he reveals himself to be a woman, a beautiful woman named Matilda This was a HOLY SHIT moment for Ambrosio Needless to say after much wringing of hands and grand speeches about his virtue being beyond reproach he finds out after all he is just a manDangerous Woman said He Into what an abyss of misery have you plunged me Should your sex be discovered, my honour, nay my life, must pay for the pleasure of a few moments Fool that I was, to trust myself to your seductions What can now be done How can my offence be expiated What atonement can purchase the pardon of my crime Wretched Matilda, you have destroyed my quiet for ever It really isn t fair after all I mean if Lucifer decided to send a beautiful being to any one of us with the intention of getting us to fall from grace we would all be doomed Samuel Taylor Coleridge thought that the creation of Matilda was Lewis s masterpiece He said she was exquisitely imagined and superior in wickedness to the most wicked of men When I think about this book being published in 1796, in the infant stages of novel writing, by a young man of 19 and written in just ten weeks it is staggering to contemplate how wonderfully he developed the villains of this story The writing is weak when it comes to characters representing the commendable people They were cardboard cutouts just mere backdrops for the villains to ply their villainy upon Ambrosio soon tires of the beautiful Matilda and turns his attentions to the seduction of Antonia a timid and innocent girl of 15 Matilda turns demon pimp and acquires magic to help Ambrosio feed his growing lust Lewis builds the tension in this section as there are several moments when we feel that he is about to accomplish his task and something interferes He knows it is not right to despoil this girl of her virtue, but he can not resist his own base urgesEvery feature, look, and motion declares you formed to bless, and to be blessed yourself Turn not on me those supplicating eyes Consult your own charms They will tell you, that I am proof against entreaty Can I relinquish those limbs so white, so soft, so delicate Thos swelling breasts, round, full, and elastic These lips fraught with such inexhaustible sweetness Can I relinquish these treasures, and leave them to another s enjoyment No, Antonia never, never I swear it by this kiss, and this and this Of course this is not Ambrosio s fault It is the girl s faultWretched Girl, you must stay here with me Here amidst these lonely Tombs, these images of Death, these rotting loathsome corrupted bodies Here shall you stay, and witness my sufferings witness what it is to die in the horrors of despondency, and breathe the last groan in blasphemy and curses And who am I to thank for this What seduced me into crimes, whose bare remembrance makes me shudder Fatal Witch was it not they beauty Have you not plunged my soul into infamy Have you not made me a perjured Hypocrite, a Ravisher, an Assassin Nay, at this moment, does not that angel look bid me despair of God s forgiveness If she just wasn t so damn beautiful he would have been fine He would have let her keep her virtue and he would be back on the path to righteousness Matthew LewisNow Lewis does ramble around a bit We follow the adventures of some noblemen trying to save their sister fiance from being condemned to a convent because her parents made a promise to God The Prioress turns out to be another great villain and capable of such diabolical vengeance that yet again Lewis made this reader uneasy He also incorporates the Bleeding Nun into this sectionWIth trembling apprehension I examined this midnight Visitor God Almighty It was the Bleeding Nun Her face was still veiled She lifted up her veil slowly What sight presented itself to my startled eyes I beheld before me an animated Corse Her countenance was long and haggard Her cheeks and lips were bloodless The paleness of death was spread over her features, and here eye balls fixed steadfastly upon me were lustreless and hollow And the Wandering JewHe spoke in a commanding tone, and drew the sable band from his fore head In spite of his injunctions to the contrary, Curiosity would not suffer me to keep my eyes off his face I raised them, and behold a burning Cross impressed upon his brow For the horror with which this object inspired me I cannot account, but I never felt its equal My senses left me for some moments A mysterious dread overcame my courage, and had not the Exorciser caught my hand, I would Have fallen out of the CircleWandering Jew by DoreStephen King wrote an interesting introduction to this volume He puts Walpole and Lewis in perspective with the emergence of this Gothic Horror genreIf this new genre had an Elvis Presley, it was Walpole Then came Matthew Lewis the genre s first punk, the Johnny Rotten of the Gothic novel The Monk was a black engine of sex and the supernatural that changed the genre and the novel itself foreverIs that Johnny Rotten or is that Matthew Lewis That sums up for me why when I was deciding between three stars and four stars I gave the push to four Lewis published the first edition Anonymously, but then when it became a sensation he published the second edition under his own name and added M.P to reflect his recently acquired seat in the House of Commons Charges of immorality and wild extravagances started to be flung in his direction and an injunction to restrain its sales was obtained Bowing to pressure he reworked and removed some of theoffensive passages There is nothing like a little controversy to drum up book sales Where Walpole and Radcliffe kept the true horror of their writing off screen Lewis audaciously grabs the reader s hand and forces it into the maw of the gruesome He writes vividly of the most horrible circumstances He even came to the attention of Lord ByronWonder working Lewis, Monk or Bard, who fain wouldst make Parnassus a churchyard Even Satan s self with thee might dread to dwell, And in thy skull discern a deeper hellGhosts, demons, burning crosses, diabolical evil, incest, murder, riots, rape, robbery, crypts, and demonic magic kept the pages turning If he had putflesh on the bones of thehonorable characters bringing them up to par with the ingenious descriptions of his villains this would have been a novel to contend with the very best If you wish to seeof my most recent book and movie reviews, visit also have a Facebook blogger page at I must have your soul must have it mine, and mine forever This is one of the pioneers of Gothic Fiction, a work that defined one of the most fascinating, demanding and controversial genres A novel written in the end of the 18th century that shocked the reading audience of its time with its last, darkness and violence But what about the contemporary readers Well, a few hundred years later and The Monk still continues to attract us My first experience with Lewis novel took placeI must have your soul must have it mine, and mine forever This is one of the pioneers of Gothic Fiction, a work that defined one of the most fascinating, demanding and controversial genres A novel written in the end of the 18th century that shocked the reading audience of its time with its last, darkness and violence But what about the contemporary readers Well, a few hundred years later and The Monk still continues to attract us My first experience with Lewis novel took place during my studies, in an exciting course called The Bible in English Literature Since then, I ve overlooked reading it and I don t know why This Christmas, an amazing colleague gave me a collector s edition as a Christmas present I think she knows me well.In Madrid, Ambrosio is a charismatic monk who dazzles the congregation with fiery sermons A younger monk, Rosario, is his faithful shadow and confidante However, Rosario is actually a young lady who has no other way to be close to him except disguising herself as a boy Ambrosio discovers the truth and succumbs, because he is weak in spirit and in flesh When his attentions turn to a young lady from a noble family, all Hell breaks loose Literally, I assure you The Monk echoes Shakespeare and the Jacobite playwrights quite clearly The cross dressing, the scandalous love affairs, the ambivalent outcome, the extreme depiction of violence and punishment The action is set in Spain, faithful to the stereotype which imagine the people of the Southern part of Europe asvulnerable and governed by their passions, within a context that breaks apart the two institutions which are supposed to provide comfort and security The Family and the Church Dishonesty is common Holy men break their vows, noble sons try to trick virgins into their path, parents bargain their children away It is a world farterrifying than any satanic involvement could ever create and it is too real Obsession leads to crimes and Lewis paints a dark portrait of a society that is corrupted to the core Men and women blame God for their weak souls while choosing a path that leads nowhere The atmosphere is tangible with dark sensuality and violent lust and madness, as Lewis depicts a country and an era in all their attractive paranoia.We live in the time when violence and sex are always around, often used to shock but ending up being nothing We aren t easily shocked now, exposed to them from an outrageously young age through TV and video games The Monk may seem to us anything but shocking Some may say that it stereotypically places the women in the archetypal roles of the Seductress or the Virgin Yes, well, obviously Take the story within its historical context and you ll have the explanation But wouldn t this be too simplistic to consider We love A Song of Ice and Fire most of us, at least , we love Stephen King and Gothic Fiction has never been better both in Literature as well as in exceptional TV series like BBC s Taboo Violence, darkness and sexual implications don t shock us, but dark stories of quality continue to fascinate us and will always do so And by quality , I mean Literature, not mass produced porn garbageDarkness continues to rule many a life, forming a kind of obsession that may lead to horror and despair This is why The Monk still remains an iconic creation in the vastness of Literature I would also wholeheartedly suggest the 2011 film version of the novel, starring Vincent Cassel at his best.My review can also be found on This is such a great fun book to read It s really not like anything else at all, it s so extreme in every way It was written in the era of the great classics, but this one is never going to be taught in schools.The book out Gothics all the Gothic novels you ever read, Jane Austen s Northanger Abbey isn t even related to the raw perversion and criminality of this madcap horror ride through the forbidden where taboos fall one by one as the The Monk, unable to live up to his vows gives in to ever This is such a great fun book to read It s really not like anything else at all, it s so extreme in every way It was written in the era of the great classics, but this one is never going to be taught in schools.The book out Gothics all the Gothic novels you ever read, Jane Austen s Northanger Abbey isn t even related to the raw perversion and criminality of this madcap horror ride through the forbidden where taboos fall one by one as the The Monk, unable to live up to his vows gives in to every deviant temptation In him, every tenet of pure, celibate monastic existence becomes corrupted and evil.The Monk has everything a cross dressing seductive heroine, get thee to a nunnery oh you virgin but not for long , sex, incest, rape, madness, torture, death, crypts, poison, magic, ghosts, bandits, vermin, the devil and the total moral and social degradation of all concerned The author, who was only 20 at the time, let his fevered imagination run as wild as it wanted and then whipped it on a bit further The most perverted and extreme taboos were just eccentricities to be worked into the characters and plot What makes the book so outstanding, and why it has never been out of print in the over 200 years since it was first published, is that it is written with great intelligence and insight into people s psyches by an extremely talented author And, unlike some classics, it isn t in the least bit boring.But seriously, no one is ever going to be asked to write a book report in school for it I might have though If I d know about the book I would have done it as summer reading Those reports had to be read out to the class That would have enlivened things a bit.It s free here It says it s a romance I wouldn t really call it that Edited for some egregious typos, bad grammar and triple redundant words, mostly mad Click here to watch a video review of this book on my BookTube channel, From Beginning to Bookend Scandalous and scintillating, The Monk is a literary marvel Click here to watch a video review of this book on my BookTube channel, From Beginning to Bookend Scandalous and scintillating, The Monk is a literary marvel Calling all Gothic Novel fans you have to read The Monk this is the Texas Chainsaw Massacre of Gothic novels which will unjade the most jaded Here you will find much fun to be had with nuns, priests with uncontrollable underwear,nuns, pregnant nuns, nuns with minimal clothing, nuns giving birth in frankly unsanitory conditions attended only by untrained inappropriate monks, heaving bosoms, unspeakable acts, souls in the process of being damned for all eternity, mostly ghostly ectoplas Calling all Gothic Novel fans you have to read The Monk this is the Texas Chainsaw Massacre of Gothic novels which will unjade the most jaded Here you will find much fun to be had with nuns, priests with uncontrollable underwear,nuns, pregnant nuns, nuns with minimal clothing, nuns giving birth in frankly unsanitory conditions attended only by untrained inappropriate monks, heaving bosoms, unspeakable acts, souls in the process of being damned for all eternity, mostly ghostly ectoplasm, also big rats The things that happen to people after they are dead in this book arethan happen to living people in some other books I have read I remember well that as I perused this volume, those many years ago, my hair rose perpendicularly from my scalp and tingles spread across my nether regions Ambrosio, the abbot, is the perfect monk, head of an abbey in Madrid, and the idol of the city, a young, handsome, charismatic man, with a spellbinding voice, that thrills the congregation at his church All the people flock to it, to hear his sermons, five minutes after the bells ring, the church is overflowing, and the noble families are there, silently the assembly listens, a living saint, they witness, the proud people are ecstatic, in this modern age the 1700 s , God has sent them Ambrosio Ambrosio, the abbot, is the perfect monk, head of an abbey in Madrid, and the idol of the city, a young, handsome, charismatic man, with a spellbinding voice, that thrills the congregation at his church All the people flock to it, to hear his sermons, five minutes after the bells ring, the church is overflowing, and the noble families are there, silently the assembly listens, a living saint, they witness, the proud people are ecstatic, in this modern age the 1700 s , God has sent them Ambrosio The Capuchin Friar an order of independent Franciscans , the Monk, is not what he appears to be, everything, a mirage, the orphan, found at the door of the abbey, as an infant, raised in the monastery, never leaving its grounds, nobody knows where the child came from Now evil thoughts permeates his curious mind, lust and debauchery, after thirty dull years, the Monk, wants to have some fun, the deadly boredom must end soon, risk his reputation, if only the abbot had a chanceAmbrosio is close to a novice by the name of Rosario, his only friend, who mysteriously arrived at the abbey, this young gentleman, always covers his face, keeps to himself, except for the abbot, their discussions are what the monk looks forward to, during the bleak daily ennui But finally in the garden of the abbey, Rosario reveals to Ambrosio, he s a she, a woman called Matilda, of course , after a short hesitation, carnal knowledge commences, that She looks like the Madonna, doesn t hurt The abbot soon shows lack of interest, a new, fresh conquest is needed, the very accommodating Rosario Matilda , through witchcraft, helps him, try to violate another innocent woman Midnight, at the cemetery, he hears the owls ominous shrieks, opens the gate, into the vast, dark, eerie underground vaults of the abbey s graveyard, jointly used by the nearby convent Ambrosio slowly descends the forbidding stairs, his heart is pounding, a flickering lamp to show the many decaying bodies, unknown vermin creeping around the horrific scene, while the monks and nuns above, hold a sacred procession, viewed by the citizens of Madrid, he goes on, until he reaches the tomb of the supposedly dead, Antonia , the drugged girl, is still alive and waking up just now, she see him and thinks all will be safe, the Monk moves closer.Later he hears the sound of footsteps approaching him, fiend, friend or enemy The uneasy monk awaits in the gloom, is his destiny, death or life Condemned when first published, in England, in 1796, and thus a bestseller, considered now, the Gothic classic novel, even though the twenty year old British author, uses Italian names in Spain, murder, incest, parricide, lascivious men and willing women including an old maid Religious bigotry, Black Magic, and some strange, creepy, and weird scenes, supernatural atmosphere too, graveyards, ghosts, demons, secret identities, and a hidden prisoner, held by, yes nuns Everything that a reader, comes to expect and dread, hate and love, in this type of book, it s all there, not for everyoneYoung Matthew Gregory Lewis, was an English M.P during the bright daylight He Now Saw Himself Stained With The Most Loathed And Monstrous Sins, The Object Of Universal Execration Doomed To Perish In Tortures The Most Severe Shocking, Erotic And Violent, The Monk Is The Story Of Ambrosio, Torn Between His Spiritual Vows And The Temptations Of Physical Pleasure His Internal Battle Leads To Sexual Obsession, Rape And Murder, Yet This Book Also Contains Knowing Parody Of Its Own Excesses As Well As Social Comedy Written By Matthew Lewis When He Was Only Nineteen, It Was A Ground Breaking Novel In The Gothic Horror Genre And Spawned Hundreds Of Imitators, Drawn In By Its Mixture Of Bloodshed, Sex And Scandal This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here Does character redemption exist in Lewis s world No, I think not The vile protagonist degrades himself on every level Here s a list to show how messed up he is 1 He lusts after his sister 2 He becomes obsessed.3 He tries to rape his sister.4 He goes insane 5 He tries to kill his sister.6 He yields his soul to Satan.7 The end He s just a little bit too creepy he s a complete sex pest with stalker like tendencies This is incredibly Gothic,so than most Gothic classics But, is t Does character redemption exist in Lewis s world No, I think not The vile protagonist degrades himself on every level Here s a list to show how messed up he is 1 He lusts after his sister 2 He becomes obsessed.3 He tries to rape his sister.4 He goes insane 5 He tries to kill his sister.6 He yields his soul to Satan.7 The end He s just a little bit too creepy he s a complete sex pest with stalker like tendencies This is incredibly Gothic,so than most Gothic classics But, is that necessarily a good thing Certainly, it was enjoyable in parts, but, ultimately, it left me feeling rather dissatisfied The power of seduction was running through this novel the monk really had no chance of surviving it He would have had to have an iron will to face the powers that were exerted on him Even the most remote doubt in his beliefs could be exploited by Lucifer The Monk has one major weakness, and that s women So, Lucifer sends the most perfect women, for the Monk, to corrupt him and apply directly to his one vulnerability I never felt like there was any chance in hell of Ambrosio resisting the charms it wasn t like he was divided or displayed a struggle of resistance, he simply fell over his heels in made obsessive love There were no two ways about it He had no chance He was doomed from the first page At times, it felt like it was over before it began It was blatant that the Monk s indulgence would lead to a cycle of moral degradation He was obviously going to be defeated by the devil and end up in some form of hell I just didn t need to read it to know how it was going to play out The sexual elements were also a little bit sordid What I mean is, it was blatant and in your face It lacked all the subtlety of Dracula and the brilliance of Stoker s metaphorical actions I think this was merely written to shock its readership Obviously, at the time such lust in books was rare and surprising especially on such a fantastical sexual level The Monk lusts after his own sister, albeit unknowingly, but it was like it was added to just to enhance the seducing power of evil There was lust for the sake of lust, incest for the sake of incest, and sexual imagery for the sake of sexual imagery I didn t take a lot from it And it was one big inglorious headache It took me a while to get over the disjointed style of the prose, the frequent shifts in narrator and the similar sounding characters I would have been lost without a plot summary, and a breakdown of the characters It all felt rather difficult to follow Now I know what you re thinking isn t that a problem with me personally rather than the novel Well, yes, I suppose it is But, this book was a struggle There was something about it that put me off from the very beginning And it only got worse This is a classic that I really don t like What live to plunge myself in infamy to become an agent of hell to work the destruction in both you and myself Alright, this book is hilarious However, there are a few spoilers in this review If you think you ll read The Monk someday and you should, seriously , maybe come back to this another time Or don t, who knows, maybe it won t be so bad Maybe this is the best, most spoiler free review you ll ever read in your life see, I m tempting you, because it s the theme of the book I m What live to plunge myself in infamy to become an agent of hell to work the destruction in both you and myself Alright, this book is hilarious However, there are a few spoilers in this review If you think you ll read The Monk someday and you should, seriously , maybe come back to this another time Or don t, who knows, maybe it won t be so bad Maybe this is the best, most spoiler free review you ll ever read in your life see, I m tempting you, because it s the theme of the book I m serious though, there are spoilers So it features Ambrosio, our Bad Blood monk, who at firsts seems a very devout believer and as though he s generally a good person This is a lie Sure he gets seduced by his trusty novice sidekick Rosario, who turns out to be a woman named Matilda and how s a man supposed to resist that, I mean, she s a WOMAN and PRETTY, get it together Ambrosio , but really his capacity for sin was there from the start, it was only, truly, a matter of time before he fell and in his vanity and stupidity forgot how to get back up So the first sin is committed by sleeping with a dying Matilda Of course, because she s a woman, and not a helpless idiot, she doesn t die and he, being a man, and a shitty one at that, tires of her, like, a week after they started doing the do There are tears, but instead of shunning him and leaving the monastery to seek greener pastures she offers to help him seduce his new target, the pious, innocent Antonia and really, Ambrosio, you maybe shouldn t trust a woman who cheated death, but he s not really that smart and kind of a coward In between those two plotting on how to get into her pants, there s another plot involving Don Lorenzo, who s also in love with Antonia popular gal, that innocence really attracts the men , and his friend Don Raymond who s in love with Lorenzo s sister, Agnes, who s in a convent in the same city A great detail is how the villains of the story almost all belong to the convent monastery, God needs better representatives There are many stories within the story, one involving a ghost really, one of the best parts of the story , one involving a band of robbers luring people into a house only to murder them and steal their money, but my personal favourite is Antonia s aging aunt Leonella finding a young, handsome, gold digging man who agrees to marry her despite her unattractive features that she s completely oblivious to , but because of her wealth You go, Leonella, you re the true heroine of this story The whole thing is just a lot I mean, someone gets torn a apart by an angry crowd, there are TWO kidnappings, someone gives birth to a baby IN A DUNGEON, someone gets raped and murdered in a freaking crypt, there s torture, love me or I die romance, and then the Devil shows up to buy a few souls and fling someone off a cliff There are so many hilarious moments and brilliant details like Antionia s mother, Elvira, copying out the bible by hand, leaving out the steamy bits, so Antonia will be safe in her complete and child like innocence, because that always ends well , and it wasn t overtly sexist, notthan I expected at least The men were mostly useless without the women, so that makes up for it For a book that was written in 10 weeks, by someone not yet 20, it is quite impressive Other than the excellent plot s , there is depth and serious consideration hidden in there, even some literary critique It s not merely frivolous entertainment, which only heightens the enjoyment What a book, what an adventure, what a good time I loved it, I loved it so much I think Wilkie Collins has spoiled me when it comes to this type of Victorian Gothic Thriller because it s so hard to match his writing and storytelling skills That being said, I ll add that The Monk was a fun read While it s clearly an attack on organized religion the Catholic church in particular a close reading makes it also clear that Lewis found a significant difference between organized religion and a personal relationship with a Supreme Being While he provides several interesting t I think Wilkie Collins has spoiled me when it comes to this type of Victorian Gothic Thriller because it s so hard to match his writing and storytelling skills That being said, I ll add that The Monk was a fun read While it s clearly an attack on organized religion the Catholic church in particular a close reading makes it also clear that Lewis found a significant difference between organized religion and a personal relationship with a Supreme Being While he provides several interesting twists, his inexperience at age 19 at storytelling is evident as he inserts seemingly innocuous scenes early for the purpose of explaining his twists later That s as annoying in an 18th century book as it is in a current TV crime drama It s also possible to tell when a twist is coming by the increase in his verbosity as he tries to build tension and suspense His best twist is saved for last but is presented in such an Oh, by the way manner in his rush to finish the story that it loses most of its shock value Despite these shortcomings, this is a good book for any fan of Gothic literature or for a stormy weekend curled up in your favorite reading spot


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About the Author: Matthew Gregory Lewis

Matthew Gregory Lewis was an English novelist and dramatist, often referred to as Monk Lewis, because of the success of his classic Gothic novel, The Monk.Matthew Gregory Lewis was the firstborn child of Matthew and Frances Maria Sewell Lewis Both his parents families had connections with Jamaica Lewis father owned considerable property in Jamaica, within four miles of Savanna la Mer, or Savanna la Mar, which was hit by a devastating earthquake and hurricane in 1779 Lewis would later inherit this property.In addition to Matthew Gregory Lewis, Matthew and Frances had three other children Maria, Barrington, and Sophia Elizabeth On 23 July 1781, when Matthew was six and his youngest sister was one and a half years old, Frances left her husband, taking the music master, Samuel Harrison, as her lover During their estrangement, Frances lived under a different name, Langley, in order to hide her location from her husband He still, however, knew her whereabouts On 3 July 1782, Frances gave birth to a child That same day, hearing of the birth, her estranged husband returned Afterwards, he began to arrange a legal separation from his wife After formally accusing his wife of adultery through the Consistory Court of the Bishop of London on 27 February 1783, he petitioned the House of Lords for permission to bring about a bill of divorce However, as these bills were rarely granted, it was rejected when brought to voting Consequently, Matthew and Frances remained married until his death in 1812 Frances, though withdrawing from society and temporarily moving to France, was always supported financially by her husband and then later, her son She later returned to London and then finally finished her days at Leatherhead, rejoining society and even becoming a lady in waiting to the Princess of Wales Frances and her son remained quite close, with her taking on the responsibility of helping him with his literary career She even became a published author, much to her son s dislike.Matthew Gregory Lewis began his education at a preparatory school under Reverend Dr John Fountain, Dean of York at Marylebone Seminary, a friend of both the Lewis and Sewell families Here, Lewis learned Latin, Greek, French, writing, arithmetic, drawing, dancing, and fencing Throughout the school day, he and his classmates were only permitted to converse in French Like many of his classmates, Lewis used the Marylebone Seminary as a stepping stone, proceeding from there to the Westminster School, like his father, at age eight Here, he acted in the Town Boys Play as Falconbridge in King John and then My Lord Duke in High Life Below Stairs Later, again like his father, he began studying at Christ Church, Oxford on 27 April 1790 at the age of fifteen He graduated with a bachelor s degree in 1794 He later earned a master s degree from the same school in 1797.