George MacDonald (1824-1905) was a Scottish author, poet,
and Christian minister. He was a pioneering figure in the field of
fantasy literature and the mentor of fellow writer Lewis Carroll.
His romantic vision of spiritual realities have been cited as a
major literary influence by many notable authors including W. H.
Auden, C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, Walter de la Mare, E. Nesbit,
and Madeleine L'Engle. Although MacDonald was a pastor of a
Congregationalist church for a time, he turned to writing to
support his family and communicate his beliefs. Three years later,
Phantastes was published to literary acclaim but little
public enthusiasm. MacDonald then became Professor of English
Literature at Bedford College, London, a post he held for seven
years. For the next forty years, MacDonald lectured and wrote
realistic novels, fantasy, children's stories, and poetry, enjoying
both popular and financial success. MacDonald produced some of his
best works during the last fifteen years of his life, including
There and Back and Lilith.The Princess and the Goblin
was first published in 1871.
"I have never concealed the fact that I regarded [MacDonald] as my
master; indeed I fancy I have never written a book in which I did
not quote from him."--C. S. Lewis
"I, for one, can really testify to a book that has made a difference to my whole existence.... Of all the stories I ever read...it remains the most real, the most realistic, in the exact sense of the phrase, the most like life. It is called The Princess and the Goblin, and is by George MacDonald."--G. K. Chesterton