The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Pilot and His Wife, The

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The Encyclopedia Americana
Pilot and His Wife, The
Edition of 1920. See also The Pilot and His Wife on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

PILOT AND HIS WIFE, The (‘Lodsen og hans Hustru’), a novel by Jonas Lie, appeared in 1874. Lie is above all the story-teller of maritime life, and he has written many excellent novels dealing especially with sailors and fishermen and with scenes on the Norwegian coast. ‘The Pilot and His Wife’ portrays the life of the sailor both at home and abroad and gives us many a vivid picture of varied experiences out on the stormy deep as well as in distant ports. The work is noted for its vigor of description. With a background of ocean waves it is a story of married life full of serious meaning. Salve Kristiansen loved a beautiful woman named Elisabeth and was evidently loved in return. But for a time Elisabeth was attracted to a young officer who wished to marry her. The old love for Salve prevailed, however, and Elisabeth spurned the officer, but Salve had already left his native land in desperation and was sailing toward foreign shores. When he finally, after some years, returned to his old home, he found that Elisabeth, after all, had been true to him. He married her, and it would seem that all was well, but such was not the case. The thought of Elisabeth's momentary hesitation did not leave Salve, and this unfortunate circumstance made life miserable for both. Ten years elapsed before husband and wife finally came to a clear understanding and a genuine appreciation of one another, and now at last they were enabled to lay the foundation for a happy life together. What the novel emphasizes is the need of implicit confidence and trust, if two persons united in wedlock are to live hapfuly together. The author showed that there can be no joy in married life, if misgivings and doubts are allowed to flourish. If there is to be love, there must be no hypocrisy. Consult Henrik Jaeger, ‘Illustreret norsk Literaturhistorie’ (II: 768-825); Arne Garborg, ‘Jonas Lie, en Udviklingshistorie.’

Joseph Alexis.