The Famulus

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About a year after the two men had quarrelled as to the future course of English Magic Jonathan Strange planned to bring out a publication called The Famulus in rivalry with Gilbert Norrell's more established journal , The Friends of English Magic. Since the latter had never been anything other than an organ for Mr Norrell's opinions and petty spites, had signally failed to enlighten the public in any degree about the nature of magic itself and was universally acknowledged to be plodding stuff indeed, the launch of a rival publication was naturally greeted with enthusiasm. This enthusiasm The Famulus did not in the least disappoint: one of the articles in the first issue dealt with necromancy, or the art of raising and communing with the dead. Young ladies the length of the land fainted away, and The Famulus sold out within two days. We may well imagine Mr Murray rubbing his hands in glee over the prospect of future issues and profits, but his celebrations would have been premature. The inspiration behind The Famulus, Jonathan Strange, chose that moment to go abroad and was soon overtaken by the events in Venice which rendered it impossible for him to lead a normal life henceforth[12,48]. The periodical never even achieved a second issue.


Famulus means "servant" in Latin.