lineThe Novel

Hanover Tales: Or, the History of Count Fradonia and the Unfortunate Baritia(London [E. Curll], 1715).
line by Olaf Simons

Hanover Tales: Or, the History of Count Fradonia and the Unfortunate Baritia. Done from the French. London: Printed in the Year 1715. 1 s. 6 d. Stich'd and 2 s.


[4] pp./ 143 pp./ [1] p.


{NA:CLU-C: *PQ1924.S3N8E}.

Bibliographical reference

ESTC: n007055.


E. Curll/ J. Hooke - cf. advertisement in Sarah Butler, Irish Tales (1716).link


s.d. stich'd, 2 s. bound.

History of Publication

The text was also sold under the title The German Atalantis ([London: E. Curll/ W. Hinchcliffe/ J. Roberts/ A. Bettesworth] 1715).link - internal evidence - see the beginning of the text with its short title - proves that the original title was probably "the History of Count Fradonia and the Unfortunate Baritia" - Curll preferred to publish the story as a political roman à clef as he might have realised there was no public interest at stake. Cf. Atalantis (1709)link for the political allusion.

All three "editions" (Curll returned in 1721 to the first title) sold one and the same edition under different title pages (note the mistakes resulting from the dictating - mistakes all three "editions" preserved: p.26: »one« for »own«, p.86: »threw« for »through«, p.90: »Horrour, Age and Love«, instead of »Horrour, Rage and Love«, p.105: »except« for »accept«, and olso the printer's mistakes p.76 »jenoy« for »enjoy« and p.»64« instead of »94«). The numerous titlecovers had to cover the fact that the whole book did not sell.

  a linkHanover Tales (London [E. Curll], 1715).link
b The German Atalantis ([London: E. Curll/ W. Hinchcliffe/ J. Roberts/ A. Bettesworth] 1715).link
c Hanover Tales [...] second edition (London: E. Curll, 1721).link

The fiction is offered with intentions to mislead the reader. Title and date of publication promise a roman à clef on the new king's court. The stories told are rather situated in a private world. Baritia relates her young life to Calista, who finally promises to intervene on her behalf and speak with her father. He has to allow his daughter, Baritia, to marry Fradonia - so far she will loose her rights as an heir among her brothers as soon as she marries. Fradonia's story is told within Baritia's. He seems to have been a supporter of Charles' IIlink - as an officer he has to fight against the moors (an allusion to Tanger-adventure in which Carl Johann von Königsmark, was involved in 1683). The military enterprise attracts the hatred of the old and ugly Moorish queen, whose feelings he does not return. The tone is - on the first pages (p.8) with moments of blank verse - at times artful. The story is due to numerous changes in places and (for a piece of pure fiction) unneccessary events difficult to relate. As a piece of private history it has its interesting aspects for an audience observing Baritia's modifcations of her own situation with the events related. If one believes her, her father planned make her his hirst heir, before he decided to disinherit her - the result of Calista's intervention (taking place between Callista and Baritia's father in the old man's closet) was according to the story at the time only disclosed to Baritia and her mother. A group of Calista's friends witnessed Baritia's call for help and as the happy result: Baritia's marriage. Baritia manages to portray her relationship to her parents as motivated by »tenderness« and »obidience«. The whole story seems to be told in a conflict the real Baritia had with her brothers who had to realise that she received parts of the family's wealth. Her report would make it, once pubilshed, difficult for her brothers to doubt the legitimicy of her claims - they'd have to constantly prove the public knowledge wrong and manipulated in numerous details (a difficult task as it would afford them to state that the novel with all the lies they had to prove actually reported real events of their familiy and thus influenced the public knowledge).


Olaf Simons, Marteaus Europa oder Der Roman, bevor er Literatur wurde (Amsterdam, 2001), p.694-702.