Oke of Okehurst - Or, The Phantom Lover (Fantasy and Horror Classics) Cover Image

About the Author: Vernon Lee

Vernon Lee was the pseudonym of the British writer Violet Paget (1856 – 1935). She is now known mostly for her supernatural fiction; she wrote also essays and poetry; she contributed to The Yellow Book. She was a follower of Walter Pater.
An engaged feminist, she always dressed á la garçonne, and was a member of the Union of democratic control[1].

Her literary works explored the themes of haunting and possession. The English writer and translator, Montague Summers described Vernon Lee as "the greatest [...] of modern exponents of the supernatural in fiction."[2]

She was responsible for introducing the concept of empathy (Einfühling) into the English language. Empathy was a key concept in Lee's psychological aesthetics which she developed on the basis of prior work by Theodor Lipps. Her response to aesthetics interpreted art as a mental and corporeal experience. This was a significant contribution to the philosophy of art which has been largely neglected.

"The Lie of the Land", in the voume "Limbo, and other Essays", has been one of the most influential essays on landscaping.

Additionally she wrote, along with her friend and colleague Henry James, critically about the relationship between the writer and his/her audience pioneering the concept of criticism and expanding the idea of critical assessment among all the arts as relating to an audience's (or her personal) response. She was a strong, though vexed, proponent of the Aesthetic movement, and after a lengthy written correspondence met the movement's effective leader, Walter Pater, in England in 1881, just after encountering his famous disciple Oscar Wilde. Her interpretation of the movement called for social action, setting her apart from both Wilde and Pater.

Oke of Okehurst - Or, The Phantom Lover (Fantasy and Horror Classics) Cover Image

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ISBN10: 1447406095 | ISBN13: 9781447406099

Do you remember my telling you, one afternoon that you sat upon the hearthstool at Florence, the story of Mrs. Oke of Okehurst? You thought it a fantastic tale, you lover of fantastic things, and urged me to write it out at once, although I protested that, in such matters, to write is to exorcise, to dispel the charm; and that printers' ink chases away the ghosts that may pleasantly haunt us, as efficaciously as gallons of holy water. But if, as I suspect, you will now put down any charm that story may have possessed to the way in which we had been working ourselves up, that firelight evening, with all manner of fantastic stuff-if, as I fear, the story of Mrs. Oke of Okehurst will strike you as stale and unprofitable-the sight of this little book will serve at least to remind you, in the middle of your Russian summer, that there is such a season as winter, such a place as Florence, and such a person as your friend,

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