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George Orwell

Decline of the English Murder and other essays

Publisher: © 1965 Penguin Books with Secker & Warburg, GB, London, ISBN (a book 2297).

This selection first published: in Penguin Books 1965.

Copyright ©: Estate of Eric Blair 1946, 1931, 1946, 1950, 1944, 1942, 1944, 1940, 1941, 1946, 1945, 1947, 1953.

The cover shows: a portrait of George Orwell by Peter Blake.

Made and printed: in Great Britain by C. Nicholls and Company Ltd.

Set: in Linotype Granjon.

OCR: Mikhail V. Chernyshev; E-Mail:

Bibliographical Note:

‘Decline of the English Murder’ first appeared in Tribune (1946), ‘A Hanging’ in Adelphi (August 1931), and ‘How the Poor Die’ in Now (November 1946). All three essays were included in the selection Shooting an Elephant.

‘Benefit of Clergy’ was withdrawn from the Saturday Book for 1944, ‘Rudyard Kipling’ first appeared in Horizon (February 1942), ‘Raffles and Miss Blandish’ in Horizon (October 1944), ‘Charles Dickens’ in the book Inside the Whale (1940), and ‘The Art of Donald McGill’ in Horizon (September 1941). These five essays were included in selection Critical Essays (1946).

‘Notes on Nationalism’ first appeared in Polemic (October 1945) and ‘Why I Write’ in Gangrel (1947). These two essays appeared in the selection Such, Such Were the Joys (1953).

By Penguin Books:

A new collection of some of the less accessible essays by the author of Animal Farm, including his lament for the inferior quality of modern murders and his comments on the changing face of fictional crime; his long essay on Dickens, and his shrewd critical remarks on Kipling and on the peculiar genius of Salvadore Dali; eyewitness accounts of a hanging in Burma and a lazar-house in Paris; with notes on nationalism, on seaside postcards, and on his own ambition — surely realized? — to make political writing into an art.


Decline of the English Murder and other essays, 1965
Decline of the English Murder, 1946
A Hanging, 1931
Benefit of Clergy: Some notes on Salvador Dali, 1944
How the Poor Die, 1946
Rudyard Kipling, 1942
Raffles and Miss Blandish, 1944
Charles Dickens, 1939
The Art of Donald McGill, 1941
Notes on Nationalism, 1945
Why I Write, 1947 (6)