East Lynne

East Lynne books and biography


East Lynne

East Lynne is an English novel of 1861 by Mrs. Henry Wood which was a Victorian bestseller and is still sometimes performed as a drama. It is remembered chiefly for its elaborate and implausible plot, centring on double identity and bigamy, and the much-quoted line:

"Gone! And never called me mother!"

"Gone! And never called me mother!" never appears in the book version of East Lynne. Another variation of this dialogue often ascribed to the book is "Dead! Dead! And never called me mother!" Neither were found in the novel, but were added to the later stage adaptations.

A film based on the novel was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1931. The movie was adapted from the novel by Tom Barry and Bradley King and directed by Frank Lloyd. The film is a melodrama starring Ann Harding, Conrad Nagel and Cecilia Loftus. Only one copy of the film is known to exist.

An early silent version starring Theda Bara was made in 1916.


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