Shop H.E. Bates Online
The Beauty of the Dead and Other Stories
Story Collection
Page Count
Jonathan Cape
Bloomsbury Publishing Ltd
Publication Year
Document Types
available as ebook

London: Jonathan Cape, 1940 (December 6). 256 pp.

Fifteen stories, seven of which were previously unpublished. Pamela Hansford Johnson wrote in John O'London's Weekly that Bates "is the most erratic artist; he can be both best and worst; and these uncertainties are, I think, attributable to the fact that he is the most experimental...[this collection] illustrates this restless exploration, source of many small failures but so many more successes, more sharply than do any of his previous garnerings. All are tales of human bondage; all have that delicate luminosity by which visions are seen more clearly than in the bright sunlight; all are sombre in theme." George Orwell dismisses the "neutral-tinted, eventless kind of story in which Mr. H.E. Bates excels."


  • John O'London's Weekly (January 10, 1941, Pamela Hansford Johnson, attached)
  • Life and Letters Today (February 1941, p. 172, A. Calder Marshall, attached)
  • The New Statesman and Nation (January 25, 1941, George Orwell, attached)
  • The Spectator (December 27, 1940, Kate O'Brien, attached)
  • Times Literary Supplement, (December 28, 1940, p. 653, R.D. Charques, attached)
  • Daily Telegraph (December 21, 1940, p. 3, George Bishop, attached)
  • Sunday Times (December 22, 1940, p. 4, Ralph Straus, attached)

Contains: The Beauty of the Dead, The Bridge, Fuchsia, The Ferry, The Loved One, Old, The Banjo, A Scandalous Woman, Love is Not Love, Quartette, Mr. Penfold, The Goat and the Stars, The Earth, Time to Kill, The Little Jeweller. ebook edition (Bloomsbury, 2016) also contains Obadiah.