National Recording Project


Detail from: Memorial to 158 Squadron by Peter W. Naylor, 2009

Statue to George Eliot


Type Statue

     Brick built plinth with concrete top and a plaque on the front with the inscription, the base supports a bronze figure of a woman seated on a low wall. The woman is looking down and appears self-contained and deep in thought. The statue depicts George Eliot in contemporary dress, she is seated on a low wall, with one arm on her knee. She is shown as a plain woman as she was in real life, her large features have been softened as if in thought.
     The orignal of this work was funded by public subscription and erected in the centre of Nuneaton in 1986.
     George Eliot was the pseudonym used by the novelist Mary Anne Evans. She was born at Arbury Farm, Astley, near Nuneaton in 1819. She took charge of the family household when her mother died (1836), and was taught at home. After the death of her father (1849) she travelled abroad, then settled in London, and began to write for the Westminster Review. She became assistant editor, and the centre of a literary circle, one of whose members, George Henry Lewes, she lived for twenty four years despite the fact that he was a married man. Whilst they considered their relationship to be equal to that of marriage, the arrangement alienated them from many of their friends and family and she spent much of her life in London. Despite her displacement from her home town she remained attached to Nuneaton and used it in her novels as the town of 'Milby'. Her first story appeared in 1857. Her major novels were Adam Bede (1859), The Mill on the Floss (1860), Silas Marner (1861), Middlemarch (1871--2), and Daniel Deronda (1876). After Lewes's death (1878), she married an old friend, John Cross, in 1880, but died soon after.


On plaque on base: 'GEORGE ELIOT / HOSPTIAL / NHS TRUST/ "Many of us . . . would say that the kindest man we have / ever known has been a medical man . . ." / Middlemarch / George Eliot 1819-18180 / Born at Arbury, Nuneaton / Statue donated by John Letts, Sculptor 1996'

Related works : WAnbNUxx002

Contributor details

Contributor Role
Letts, John Sculptor

Element details

Part of work Material Dimensions
Base Brick 100cm high x 120cm wide x 120cm deep approx.
Statue Bronze 130cm high x 100cm wide x 100cm deep approx

PMSA recording information

Reference Region
WAnbNUxx017 BM
General condition Good
Surface condition
  • No damage
Structural condition
  • None
Road A444
Precise location George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust, in garden area alongside main entrance
A-Z ref None
OS ref SP356904
Date of design 1985
Year of unveiling 1996
Unveiling details 1996
Commissioned by Donated by the artist
Duty of care George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust
Listing status Don't know
At risk? No known risk

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