Wuthering Heights is a novel by Emily Bronte, written between October 1845 and June 1846, and published in 1847 under the pseudonym Ellis Bell. It was her first and only published novel: she died aged 30 the following year. The decision to publish came after the success of her sister Charlotte's novel, Jane Eyre. After Emily's death, Charlotte edited the manuscript of Wuthering Heights, and arranged for the edited version to be published as a posthumous second edition in 1850. Wuthering Heights is the name of the farmhouse on the Yorkshire moors where the story unfolds. The book's core theme is the destructive effect that jealousy and vengefulness have, both on the jealous or vengeful individuals and on their communities. Although Wuthering Heights is now widely regarded as a classic of English literature, it received mixed reviews when first published, and was considered controversial because its depiction of mental and physical cruelty was so unusually stark. In the second half of the 19th century, Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre was considered the best of the Bronte sisters' works, but later critics argued that Wuthering Heights was superior. Wuthering Heights has inspired adaptations, including film, radio and television dramatisations, a musical by Bernard J. Taylor, a ballet, operas (by Bernard Herrmann, Carlisle Floyd, and Frederic Chaslin), a role-playing game, and a 1978 song by Kate Bush.
About the Author
Emily Jane Bronte ( 30 July 1818 - 19 December 1848) was an English novelist and poet, best remembered for her only novel, Wuthering Heights, now considered a classic of English literature. Emily was the third eldest of the four surviving Bronte siblings, between the youngest Anne and her brother Branwell. She wrote under the pen name Ellis Bell. Emily Bronte was born on 30 July 1818 in the village of Thornton, Yorkshire, in the North of England, to Maria Branwell and Patrick Bronte. She was the younger sister of Charlotte Bronte and the fifth of six children, though the two oldest girls, Maria and Elizabeth, died in childhood. In 1820, shortly after the birth of Emily's younger sister Anne, the family moved eight miles away to Haworth, where Patrick was employed as perpetual curate; here the children developed their literary talents.