How to Create the Perfect Wife:  Georgian Britain's most ineligble bachelor and his quest to cultivate the ideal woman - Wendy Moore

Thomas Day (1748-1789) was a lawyer, abolitionist and author. His first published work, a poem The Dying Negro (1773), co written with his friend John Bicknell was one of the first pieces of literature that attacked slavery and encouraged by his friend Richard Lovell Edgeworth he wrote The History of Sandford and Merton (1783-1789) one of the first books for children. Sandford and Merton was a huge bestseller and unsurprisingly it was read by such writers as Robert SoutheyCharles Dickens, Leigh Hunt, Oscar Wilde and P.G. Wodehouse.

 

While his closest friends knew of Day's experiment and wish to create a perfect wife for himself the public learned about it only after his death. Moore tells this unusual story in objective and nonjudgmental voice. I can highly recommend this book for these who are looking for interesting and well written history/biography.

 

Few books that were inspired by Day's quest:

Watch and Ward by Henry James 

Belinda by Maria Edgeworth

Orley Farm by Anthony Trollope

Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw