G.H.Lewes was an unconventional Victorian. Though he is best remembered for the liaison with George Eliot - marriage in all but name - which occupied the last 25 years of his life, he was also a man and writer of varied interests and capacities. For the first time, Rosemary Ashton presents a full, scholarly account of his extraordinary life, based on extensive research and using previously unpublished material. She has made new discoveries about his origins, and illuminates his early life, about which very little has been known till now.;Lewes was a journalist, novelist, playwright and actor, living in London's Bohemia and friendly with Dickens and Thackeray. He enjoyed an open marriage with Agnes Jervis, causing a scandal by condoning her relationship with his best friend Thornton Hunt. When he met Marian Evans in 1851, he was notorious as a radical, freethinker and free lover. Because of his endorsement of his wife's adultery and his registering of her four children by Hunt as his own, he was unable to divorce Agnes and marry Marian. Thus he was once more at the centre of a scandal when he set off with Marian for Weimar in 1854.;Rosemary Ashton throws fresh light on the details of Lewes' elopement with Marian Evans; on his important "Life of Goethe", written in Germany; on her emergence with his encouragement as George Eliot, her success and their eventual acceptance in society; on Lewes's scientific work and support for Darwin; and on the happiness and tragedies of their family life together.