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Weighed and Wanting

by George Macdonald

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George MacDonald (1824-1905) was a Scottish author, poet, and Christian minister. Though no longer a household name, his works (particularly his fairy tales and fantasy novels) have inspired deep admiration in such notables as W. H. Auden, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Madeleine L'Engle. C. S. Lewis wrote that he regarded MacDonald as his "master". Even Mark Twain, who initially despised MacDonald, became friends with him. MacDonald grew up influenced by his Congregational Church, with an atmosphere of Calvinism. But MacDonald never felt comfortable with some aspects of Calvinist doctrine. Later novels, such as Robert Falconer (1868) and Lilith (1895), show a distaste for the Calvinist idea that God's electing love is limited to some and denied to others. Especially in his Unspoken Sermons (1867-89) he shows a highly developed theology. His best-known works are Phantastes (1858), At the Back of the North Wind (1871) and The Princess and the Goblin (1872), all fantasy novels, and fairy tales such as - The Light Princess (1867), The Golden Key (1867), and The Wise Woman (1875).

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She glanced round in search of the mother. Some one was bending over the bed in the farther corner; the place was lighted with but a single candle, and she thought it was she, stooping over her baby; but a moment's gaze made it plain that the back was that of a man: could it be the doctor again? Was the poor woman worse? She entered and approached the father, who then first seeing who it was that had knocked and looked in, pulled off the cap he invariably wore, and came forward with a bashful yet eager courtesy.



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