Morpho Eugenia is one of a pair of novellas by A. S. Byatt published as
by Chatto & Windus in 1992. (Cover by Norman Adams)
I finished reading the first tale today. In just 160 pages Byatt has woven a work of philosophy, fable, scientific, and sociological study – all in powerful, delicate, elegantly descriptive prose – diaphanous, colourful and splendidly eloquent. Set in the mid-nineteenth century the Victorian obsession with naturalism is balanced with the Darwinian prompted debate between Creation and Evolution. The societies of insects such as bees and ants features alongside the wealthy family systems. There is a startlingly prophetic message for our over-developed societal organisations.
And this is not all. I didn’t foresee the surprising revelation at the end.
A few small vignettes decorate the pages.
This evening we dined once more on Jackie’s delicious steak, mushrooms and onions pie; served with roast potatoes, sweet potato, cauliflower, carrots, and cabbage.