London: Jonathan Cape, 1932
From a private collection
While Radclyffe Hall is synonymous with The Well of Loneliness, she wrote six other novels which largely avoided questions of sexuality. Hall is rumoured to have written this deeply conservative religious novel partly in horrified response to the caricature nearby of herself crucified, as expiation at having caused such a blasphemous image. In direct contrast to this devout intention, it is fascinating to read the mildly flirtatious inscription to Lady Dorchester in this example, where Hall, clearly referencing an earlier conversation, explains that she is ‘hoping that this book also may be given a place at her bedside’.