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The Siege of Malta and Bizarro$
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Walter Scott and J. H. Alexander

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780748624874

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748624874.001.0001

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Essay on the Text of Bizarro

Essay on the Text of Bizarro

(p.435) Essay on the Text of Bizarro
The Siege of Malta and Bizarro

J. H. Alexander

Judy King

Graham Tulloch

Edinburgh University Press

Walter Scott seems to have been particularly interested in the outlaw as a figure who might have led a happy life but is turned aside into a life of crime. It is likely that he was working on Bizarro when in residence at Rome, since there is an account from two sources of how he showed the incomplete story to a German visitor. Sir William Gell presents a consistent view of Scott as having little real interest in Italy and its Classical history. However, had he been able to read Bizarro, he would have found that the reality was rather different. The scenario constructed by Gell, in which Scott was largely impervious to what was going on, was distinctly misleading. Many of Scott's changes simply correct mistakes of which he became aware either as he wrote or later. Bizarro emerges as a worthy conclusion to Scott's long series of prose narratives.

Keywords:   Bizarro, Walter Scott, Sir William Gell, Italy, Classical history

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