“The Woman In White” is a 1859 novel by the English author, Wilkie Collins. The novel, which predates Sherlock Holmes by decades, is considered to be one of the first mystery novels ever written. It was first published in the serial format in Charles Dickens’ magazine, “All the Year Round” and “Harper’s Weekly” before being adapted into a full-length novel in 1860.
The plot uses many different narrators to describe a mystery that takes place in London and nearby villages in the late 1800’s.
The main character and chief narrator, Walter Hartright is a schoolteacher who takes a job at an estate called Limmeridge, teaching two young women how to draw. Walter falls in love with his student, Laura almost immediately and is dismayed when her half-sister, Marian tells him that Laura is already engaged to the villainous Sir Glyde. Walter leaves town and Glyde marries Laura, Marian soon discovers, however that he only married her to obtain her fortune and that he and his cohort, Count Fosco plan to kill Laura off. Through a series of events, Walter and Marian discover that Fosco has switched Laura out with her other half-sister, Anne and that Anne has died.
Walter and Marian must restore Laura’s identity and uncover the secrets surrounding Fosco and Glyde’s pasts. The novel has been adapted into seven different TV shows and films as well as several theater shows.
Part One, Section One
The story begins with a short chapter in which a twenty-eight year old drawing teacher named Walter Hartright tells the reader that he intends to tell them a story. Hartright says that more than one witness is going to tell the story as more than one witness would tell a story in court and that he wants to “present the truth always in it’s most direct and most intelligible aspect.” He intends to trace as series of events relating to two people.
In the next scene, the story begins. It is July and Walter is struggling to make ends meet with his current work. A friend whom he once saved from drowning, Pesca tells Walter about a job in a town northwest of London. Walter would be working as a drawing teacher for two young women in the household of Mr. Frederick Fairlie. Walter agrees to accept the job although the offer gives him a bad feeling that he cannot explain. That night, Walter encounters a strange woman dressed in white on his way home. She asks him the way to London and, though Walter is unnerved by her, he escorts her the few miles into London.
The woman talks about a baronet that she is afraid of and a place called Limmeridge. Walter is all the more unnerved by this, as he was told that the house that he is going to is called Limmeridge, but he brushes it off as a coincidence.Walter puts the woman in a carriage. A few moments later he overhears some men telling a policeman that a woman in white has escaped from the local mental asylum. Walter is unnerved once again by the woman, and unsure if he did the right thing by helping her. But he realizes that there is nothing he can do about it and goes home to bed. The next day, Walter travels to Limmeridge where he meets the two women that he will be teaching. Marian and Laura are half sisters and the nieces of Frederick Fairlie, who is an invalid.
The sisters are both adults and opposites of each other. Where Marian is quick-witted and dark haired but poor, Laura is fair and rich. Walter befriends Marian quickly and tells her about his encounter with the woman in white. Marian is surprised by the tale and decides to look into it. However, Walter finds that he does not like the ill-tempered Mr. Fairlie as much. Fairlie requests that Walter restore some pictures for him during the four months that he is to stay at the house. Walter agrees and internally hopes that he won’t have to speak to Fairlie again. The next day, Walter meets Laura and instantly falls in love with her. She is so beautiful that he cannot help but write poetically about her.
That evening, Marian tells Walter that she has been going through her late mother’s letters to see if she can find some mention of the woman in white. She tells him that there was a mention of a Mrs. Catherick who had a daughter named Anne that was enrolled at the local school. Anne was a bit slow and wore nothing but white. She also bore a strong resemblance to Laura. Marian and Walter decide that this Anne Catherick must be the woman in white. Marian gleans that Walter is falling in love with her sister and lets him know that Laura is engaged to a man named Sir Percival Glyde who is wealthy. Laura does not love Glyde but she promised her dying father that she would marry him. Glyde turns out to be a baronet which forces Walter to recall the baronet that Anne Catherick said she was afraid of.
Laura receives a strange letter insulting Glyde and becomes upset. Marian says that the letter is “deranged” and contacts the family lawyer, Mr. Gilmore. Marian and Walter decide to ask around town to find out if anyone knows who wrote the letter. All they discover is that a lady in white has been seen hanging around Mrs. Fairlie’s grave. That night, Walter stakes out the grave and watches as Anne Catherick and an elderly woman walk up to it. Anne cleans off the grave but is surprised by Walter coming out of the shadows. She recognizes him from London and tells him that she stayed with a friend named Mrs. Clements because she was hiding out. But Anne eventually came back with Mrs. Clements to stay at the home of Mrs. Clements friends.Anne gets upset when Walter mentions Glyde and he decides that Glyde was the one that institutionalized Anne.
The next day, Walter tells Marian about the encounter and hands in his resignation to Mr. Fairlie. He feels that he has to leave Limmeridge because he has fallen in love with Laura and cannot be with her. Marian promises Walter that she will try to stop Laura’s wedding. Marian goes to the home of Mrs. Clements friends, only to discover that the two women have already left and that Anne has fallen ill. Mr. Gilmore arrives before Walter can leave and tells him that he has forwarded a copy of the letter that Anne sent Laura to Glyde. The following day, Walter leaves Limmeridge and says goodbye to Marian and Laura.
Part One, Section Two
In the next section, the story is picked up through the narrative of Mr. Gilmore, the family lawyer. He first explains that he was urged to write down his part of this story by Walter. His story begins in November, when he is called to Limmeridge by Glyde and Laura. Glyde tells everyone that he helped the Catherick’s by getting Anne a place at a private asylum where she would be well cared for. He tells them to write to Mrs. Catherick to get her to corroborate the story. Gilmore is confused as to why Laura and Marian are so upset by this story.
Gilmore writes to Mrs. Catherick, who soon writes back confirming the story. Marian wonders if Glyde is telling the truth and Laura begs her to decide for her whether she should end her engagement with the man. Mr. Gilmore tries to calm down Laura but he doesn’t have the heart to tell her that she is being ridiculous. She leaves all of the legal matters of her marriage to Mr. Gilmore and only asks that Marian be allowed to live with her if she does get married.
Back in London, Gilmore begins drawing up Laura’s marriage papers and arranging her finances. She is set to inherit a lot of money from her deceased parents as well as Limmeridge. Gilmore writes the papers so that Laura’s children will inherit the money when she dies, or if she has no children, Marian will inherit it. Glyde sends a counter-proposal that says that all of Laura’s money would go to him if she dies. Mr. Gilmore is unnerved by this and fights against it. Gilmore runs into Walter in town and notices that he looks sickly.
Back at Limmeridge, Gilmore talks with Fairlie about Glyde’s request. Fairlie tells him to do whatever Glyde wants. Despite his anger over the decision, Gilmore has to acquiesce.
Part One, Section Three
Section three is told from Marian’s perspective. Marian is worried about Laura and does not want her to marry Glyde. Laura decides that she is going to confess that she loves Walter to Glyde and let him end the engagement if he is going to. Laura confesses but does not say that it is Walter that she loves and Glyde tells her that he doesn’t care and he still wants to marry her.
This confirms for Marian that Glyde only wants Laura’s money. Marian receives a letter from Walter telling her that he is going to South America for a year. She does not tell this to Laura and burns the letter. Laura’s wedding takes place in December and Marian is saddened but slightly cheered to learn that she will be going with Laura and living near to Eleanor Fairlie, Laura’s aunt.
Part Two, Section One
Six months later, Marian moves to Blackwater Park, Laura and Glyde’s house. She makes it to the house before the newlyweds do and discovers that Mrs. Catherick has already been at the house to see Glyde about Anne who is still missing. When Marian and Laura are reunited, Marian notices that Laura is more withdrawn and realizes that Glyde has been physically abusing her.
Worse than even Laura, Eleanor Fairlie, now Countess Fosco has changed as well. Once vivacious and entertaining, she is now silent and removed. Marian suspects that her lazy, pompous husband, Count Fosco is the architect of her new personality. Marian overhears Glyde’s lawyer telling him that Laura has to sign the marriage documents in the presence of witnesses. She warns Laura not to sign anything that Glyde gives her. When Glyde hears that Mrs. Catherick was at his house, he is outraged and says that he is leaving town after Laura signs the documents. Laura refuses to sign the documents and Glyde becomes outraged.
Marian decides to speak to Mr. Gilmore but finds that he is out of town and that she must write to his partner, Mr. Kyrle. Outside the house, Marian and Laura see a woman in white and begin to feel that they are being watched and followed everywhere they go. Mr. Kyrle writes back to Marian and tells her to tell Laura not to sign anything and that she can request that he look over the documents. Laura rushes in and tells Marian that she just talked to Anne Catherick who gave her a cryptic warning about Glyde. Anne is deathly ill. She tells Laura that Glyde has a big secret.
Laura tries to sneak out to see Anne again but Glyde catches her and puts her under constant guard so that even Marian isn’t allowed to see her. Furious, Marian threatens to call the police and Count Fosco intervenes to get Glyde to let Laura go. Laura goes to see Anne again but finds a note saying that she is being watched and that Anne will try to see her later.
Glyde appears suddenly and in her fear of him, Laura confesses what Anne told her. Late one night, Marian sneaks out of her room and spies on a conversation between Count Fosco and Glyde. She discovers that both men are out of money and are trying to trick Laura into signing her savings over to them. Fosco tells Glyde that he should handle the plan from now on, as Glyde is too emotional. Glyde thinks that Laura knows his big secret because of Anne and that she might have told her lover. Marian rights in her diary that she is unsure what to do. The next account in her diary is from Count Fosco who confesses that she has fallen ill and that he has read her diary and found it very interesting.
Part Two, Section Two
The next part of the narrative is from the perspective of Frederick Fairlie. Fairlie says that Marian’s maid, Fanny arrived one day with a letter from Marian. Fanny confesses that she was on her way with the letters when she met the Countess in an inn who gave her something that made her pass out.
When she awoke, the letters were crumpled but intact. Mr. Kyrle writes to Fairlie saying that he received a letter from Marian that was only a blank sheet of paper. The Count asks Fairlie if Laura can stay with him for a while. He says that Marian is ill and will be staying on at Blackwater park. Fairlie agrees because he knows that Laura won’t leave Marian when she is ill and therefore, neither of them will be coming to his house.
Part Two, Section Three
Here, the story is picked up by a maid at Blackwater called Eliza Michelson. She gives her part as a testimony that was solicited by Walter. She says that Marian became ill and developed typhus, a bacterial infection that can be fatal. Eliza acts as her nurse until a strange woman named Mrs. Rubelle arrives and says that she was hired to nurse Marian by Glyde. Marian slowly starts to recover.
Glyde suddenly announces that he is leaving and closing up the house. He tells Eliza to fire all of the servants except for one, Margaret Porcher. Eliza is then sent to find somewhere for the sisters to live in Torquay and when she returns she finds that the Fosco’s have gone to London. Marian has also left the house to return to Limmeridge. Because Marian was not well enough to be moved, Laura gets upset and insists on going to her sister. Glyde agrees but insists that she stay the night at the Fosco’s on the way.
Laura agrees but confesses to Eliza that she intends to skip the Fosco’s house. Eliza bids her goodbye and is surprised later that day to see Mrs. Rubelle outside the house. Mrs. Rubelle tells her that Marian is still at Blackwater Park. Eliza confronts Glyde, who tells her that he only lied to get Laura out of the house for her own betterment. Glyde tells her that he is leaving and she is to care for Marian with Mrs. Rubelle.
Part Two, Section Four
The next section is divided up into several different narratives. First is Hester Pinhorn, Count Fosco’s cook who says that Laura arrived at the Fosco’s house and passed out immediately. Two doctors were called and both said that Laura was suffering from a heart disease. Her disease gets worse quickly and Laura dies a few days later. Dr. Goodrick’s account confirms that Laura died from an aneurysm.
A woman named Jane Gould is called to prepare Laura for burial and she confirms that Laura is dead. An anonymous writer copies out what Laura’s tombstone says. Walter returns to the narrative, saying that he returned to England from South America feeling like a changed man. He learned the news of Laura’s death after seeing his family and is devastated. He goes to her grave and Marian approaches with another woman who Walter is shocked to find is Laura, herself.
Part Three, Section One
Months later, Walter, Marian and Laura are all living together in London, pretending to be siblings and hiding. Everyone assumes that Marian and Walter are hiding Anne Catherick who, in her delusion, thinks that she is Laura. Walter then relates how Laura and Anne came to switch places. After recovering from her illness, Marian was bereft to learn of Laura’s death. She went back to Limmeridge and beings searching out the people that saw Laura in her final days to investigate what happened to her sister. Fosco sent Mr. Fairlie a letter saying that Anne was back in the asylum but that she was now insisting that she was Laura Fairlie. Hearing of this, Marian goes to the asylum to speak to Anne and is shocked to discover that Anne is really Laura.
Laura is desperate to get out and slightly insane after spending weeks in the asylum. Marian manages to get her out by bribing her nurse and the two go to Limmeridge. On the train ride, Laura tells Marian that she was stopped by Fosco once she reached London who took her to a house that she didn’t recognize and told her that Marian was resting. Fosco gave Laura something that made her pass out and when she awoke she was in the asylum and people thought she was Anne. The sisters reach Limmeridge but Mr. Fairlie refuses to believe that Laura is who she says she is. He sends them away and it was then that they found Walter.
Walter writes that Fosco switched Anne and Laura and that Anne was the one that died at his house. Now the three live together so they can figure out what to do next. Marian is still recovering from her illness and Laura is still traumatized from the asylum. Walter and Marian try to help Laura recover her memory and decide to get testimonies from the people featured in part two so that they can piece together what happened to her. Walter realizes that there is a chance that Anne died before Laura actually left for London which would destroy the whole story and restore Laura’s identity. Walter meets with Mr. Kyrle and tells him everything.
Kyrle is shocked and says that if what Walter says is true, there is no way to prove it. When Walter returns home, he discovers that Fosco has sent them a letter warning them away. Walter realizes that they have to figure out what Glyde’s big secret is so they can use it as leverage. Walter and Marian track down Mrs. Clements who thinks that Anne is missing again after Laura left the asylum. Mrs. Clements tells him that Anne saw a doctor after they ran away from her friend’s house and that he told her she had a heart disease and was dying. They were then found by Fosco who brought them to London and gave Anne medicine.
Two weeks later, Countess Fosco brought the women to London and tricked Mrs. Clements out of the carriage so that she could get kidnap Anne. Walter asks about Anne’s childhood and learns that the Clements and Catherick are lived in the same town when Anne was a girl. A town scandal developed when Glyde arrived and started visiting Mrs. Catherick and Mr. Catherick thought they were having an affair. People began to wonder if Mrs. Catherick’s baby was not her husbands.Mr. Catherick left town and Mrs. Clements became little Anne’s nursemaid. Walter asks if Glyde and Mrs. Catherick knew each other before she was married and Mrs. Clements says that she isn’t sure.
Feeling guilty, Walter gently breaks the news of Anne’s death to Mrs. Clements. She is saddened but gives Mrs. Catherick’s address to him. Walter returns to Marian and tells her what he has learned. He goes to visit Mrs. Catherick and finds that she is now an old, insane woman who has been ostracized by the town for years. She gives Walter very little information before throwing him out, but Walter is able to follow the information to the town Vestry where Mrs. Catherick and Glyde were caught together. The clerk at the Vestry shows Walter the marriage register which happened to be in the same room that Glyde and Catherick were caught. Walter asks for the registries from the year of Glyde’s birth and finds the entry for his parents. He is sent to the town of Knowlesbury to see another registry, but on the way there is accosted by some of Glyde’s paid henchmen.
Walter is goaded into a fight and then arrested. After making bail, Walter returns to his investigation. He finds that the copy of the registry in Knowlesbury lacks the entry for Glyde’s parents. This means that Glyde forged the entry in the other town to prove that he was not illegitimate. His illegitimacy means that Blackwater Park is not even legally his. On his way back, Walter encounters more of Glyde’s henchmen and gets into another fight. As he is outnumbered, he manages to escape and rushes back to the first town to find that the clerk that he spoke to is now missing his keys. He bumps into Glyde’s servant and discovers that Glyde is in the Vestry.
Suddenly, the church goes up in flames and Walter attempts to save Glyde but is too late. Glyde dies inside. Walter is called on to testify at the inquest into Glyde’s death over the next few days and the death is ruled as an accident. Glyde’s secret dies with him. Walter receives a letter from Mrs. Catherick revealing her entire story.
Part Three, Section Two
Mrs. Catherick confesses that she is glad that Glyde is dead and that she thinks that Walter has earned the right to hear the full story. Glyde told her that he needed to get into the registry and he bribed her to be his accomplice. Since she knew his secret, over the years he provided for her and helped get Anne into a decent asylum. The last part was also because Anne had learned the secret accidentally and had begun saying it aloud, not realizing what she was saying. Glyde had her committed. Catherick hates Glyde because he cost her her husband and her respectability.
Part Three, Section Three
Walter receives a letter from Marian saying that they have had to move to a new place and that he should hurry home. Walter decides to let Glyde’s secret go since the man is dead now. Upon reuniting with Marian and Laura, Marian tells Walter that she got a note from Fosco asking to meet where he again warned her to stop asking about Glyde. Marian told Fosco that she hadn’t told Laura that Glyde was dead.
When she does tell her, Laura takes the news well. Walter and Marian begin investigating Fosco and trying to find out who Anne’s real father was. Walter finds out that Philip Fairlie was involved with Mrs. Catherick and is not surprised, given how much Anne and Laura look-alike, to hear that they may have the same father. He does not tell anyone this, however. Laura begins coming back to herself and Walter asks Marian’s permission to marry her sister. Both Marian and Laura agreed.
Walter and Laura are married and happy but Walter still intends to take down Count Fosco. Walter asks for Pesca for help. Pesca is from Italy like Fosco and Walter wonders if Pesca may have know Fosco when he was involved in Italian politics. Walter follows Fosco through town and sees him buy opera tickets. He buys tickets as well and he and Pesca attend the opera to spy on Fosco. They see a strange blonde man watching Fosco. Fosco then sees Pesca and seems to recognize him. He reacts in fear. Walter questions Pesca and discovers that he is actually in England working for a top-secret political society.
The society kills people that betray them and Pesca wonders if Fosco may have betrayed them. Walter decides to confront Fosco and Marian insists on coming with him. Before going, he writes to Pesca and tells him to open the letter if he dies. The letter accuses Fosco of betraying Pesca’s secret society and Walter tells him to give it to the right people. Walter goes to Fosco’s home and tells him what he has learned. He tells him that he wants a full, written confession about Anne from Fosco so that he can restore Laura’s identity. Walter also wants Fosco to tell him how to confirm the date of Laura leaving Blackwater Park. After that, Walter says he will allow him to leave the country and the change to duel him later. Fosco agrees and begins packing to leave and writing letters.
Part Three, Section Four
Fosco takes up the narrative and admits to everything that Walter is accusing him off. He says he developed the plan to switch Anne and Laura after he met Anne and Mrs. Clements. He lured Anne to London but she died slightly earlier than he anticipated and he had to rush Laura to London and drug her. Glyde than gave him his share of Laura’s fortune. He admits that he psychologically abused and manipulated his wife until she would follow his orders without questions but does not think that he did anything wrong.
Part Three, Section Five
Walter confirms the date that Laura left Blackwater Park and goes to see Mr. Kyrle. Kyrle is shocked to hear all that Walter has uncovered. He goes with Marian, Walter, and Laura to Limmeridge to convince Mr. Fairlie that Laura is who she says she is. The gather the servants and townspeople together to tell them what has happened and Laura is welcomed home. Laura’s name is replaced with Anne’s on her tombstone. Before ending the story, Walter reveals that he discovered that Fosco was soon found dead in the Seine River in Paris after having been murdered (after which the Countess went on to write a tell-all book about him). Months later, Walter and Laura have a son that they name Walter. They live with Marian until Mr. Fairlie dies and Laura inherits Limmeridge. Walter Junior is now the rightful heir to Limmeridge.
Walter Hartright – The main narrator of the novel. Walter is a schoolteacher who takes a job teaching two women how to draw at their uncle’s estate. Walter is an interesting character as he is many different things, a teacher, a romantic, a detective, a fighter, etc. He falls in love with Laura immediately after meeting her and his passages about her drip with poetry. However, he is also a gentlemen and he leaves Limmeridge after realizing that Laura is engaged to someone else and it would be inappropriate for him to continue to teach her. Walter’s biggest character moments come from his investigation into Glyde’s secret and Fosco’s identity. Walter is intelligent and quick-witted, making logical leaps about the scant clues he is given that are always proven to be true. But it is always obvious that he is only desperate to restore Laura’s identity because he loves her and not to prove that he was right. In the end, he marries Laura and has a happy life with her.
Marian Halcombe – Laura’s half-sister. Marian described as being the polar opposite of Laura as far as looks and wealth, but Marian holds a certain resolve and strength of character that Laura does not. Despite being a woman in a less-privileged time, Marian rules her own life with independence and never marries over the course of the novel. She investigates Fosco and Glyde’s nefarious plan and discovers key pieces of the puzzle through her own reconnaissance. She does not bow down to the intimidation of any other character and continues to tells the villains to their face that she knows what they are planning. Marian is clever but also kind and loves her sister more than anything. Everything she does in the novel is in service to Laura whom she seems to feel not only a connection to but a need to protect.
Laura Fairlie – Marian’s sister and Walter’s eventual wife. In comparison to Marian, Laura is a bit more passive. She is described as being delicate and fair. Laura marries Glyde against her better judgment because she promised her father that she would on his deathbed, a choice that either paints her as loyal or weak, given the reader. However, she does stand up to her husband in small ways and plans to run away from him several times. Laura shows that she does not necessarily need Marian to protect her as much as Marian, herself feels that she needs to. After Laura’s traumatic stay in the asylum, she begins to slowly recover herself, a period during which she is not in the novel as much. In the end, it is her presence that restores her fortune and brings the novel to a happy ending.
Sir Percival Glyde – The villain of the novel. Glyde is a money-hungry, desperate man who marries Laura for her fortune and then plans to trick her into signing it away to him. It is not Glyde that ultimately comes up with the plan to switch Anne and Laura but he goes along with it as a way to get rid of Laura so that he can have her money. Glyde is desperate for money and desperate to keep the secret that he is technically illegitimate and does not have the rights to his own home, Blackwater Park, a secret.
Count Fosco – It is Fosco who comes up with the plan to switch Anne and Laura. Fosco is described as an overpowering man but a strangely charming one. His villainy comes from his ability to charm people into getting what he wants from them. It is discovered that the Italian Fosco is only in England so that he can escape from a secret society that he betrayed. They later kill him and dump him into the Seine River in Paris.
Wilkie Collins Biography
Wilkie Collins was born on January 8th, 1824 in Marylebone, London. The son of a well-known painter, named William, he was given the middle name Wilkie to honor his godfather and quickly became known by it. Initially, Collins’ religious mother schooled he and his brother at home until he was finally allowed to attend the Maida Vale Academy in 1835.
The following year, he lived with his parents in Italy and France, later attending a private boarding school in Highbury. It was at this school that Collins first learned a passion for storytelling as he was bullied by a boy who insisted that Collins tell him a story before bed every night. Collins later admitted that the bully awakened a love of storytelling in him that he may never have known otherwise.
In 1840, Collins left school and began working as a clerk in a firm of tea merchants. During this time, his first story ‘The Last Stage Coachman’ was published in a magazine. In 1844, he wrote his first novel, “Iolani, or Tahiti As It Was, A Romance” which was rejected and not published until after his death.
In 1846, Collins’ father put him in law school where he showed no interest in his studies and continued to write. Collins’ father died in 1847 and the same year, his first published book, “Memoirs of the Life of William Collins’ Esq., R.A.” came out. His second book, “Antonia, or the Fall of Rome” was published only three years later.
In 1851, Collins completed law school, and although he never had a law practice, he still used much of his legal knowledge in his writing. In 1851, Collins was introduced to the famous author Charles Dickens but a mutual friend and the two became close friends. He part of the next decade touring with Dickens’ acting troupe and publishing stories in Dickens’ magazine.
In 1853, Collins had his first case of gout which plagued him for the rest of his life. He later began using laudanum to treat the illness and became addicted. In 1856, he joined the staff of the magazine Household Words and began writing plays with Dickens.
In 1858, Collins began living with his lifetime companion, Caroline Graves, a widow with one child, whom he lived with for the rest of his life. Throughout the 1860s, Collins published some of his best-known and most enduring works, including “The Woman in White”, “No Name”, “Armdale” and “The Moonstone”. These works secured his international fame and financial security.
In 1863, he began traveling to German and Italian spas for his health. In 1868, Collins began seeing a woman named Martha Rudd whom he had three children with. He continued to see Caroline Graves during this time, splitting his time between the two women.
In 1870, Charles Dickens died, an event that grieved Collins deeply. A theater production of “The Woman in White” was produced the following year to good reviews.
In 1873 and 74, Collins traveled to the United States and toured the country giving readings of his books. He continued to publish new works although the quality began to decline as he became more and iller. During this time, he mentored many young writers and helped to work on copyright laws surrounding novels.
At the age of 82, Collins died after a paralytic stroke. He was buried at Kensal Green Cemetery in West London.