For this new edition, the text has been reset in a larger typeface for ease of reading. "Backgrounds" helps readers understand Eliot's ideas on life and art with generous selections from her letters, journals, essays, and other fictional works. "Contemporary Reviews" records the impressions of Sidney Colvin, Henry James, Joseph Jacobs, and Leslie Stephen. "Recent Criticism" collects eleven essays-seven of them new to this edition-which center on the novel's major themes. Contributors include Mark Schorer, Jerome Beaty, Cherry Wilhelm, Robert Heilman, Lee R. Edwards, Alan Mintz, T. R. Wright, Matthew Rich, Alan Shelston, and Claudia Moscovici. A Chronology and Selected Bibliography are included.