Black Beauty

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Black Beauty: The Autobiography of a Horse, first published November 24, 1877 is Anna Sewell's only novel, composed in the last years of her life between 1871 and 1877 while she was a housebound, bedridden invalid. The story is told in the first person as an autobiographical memoir by a high bred horse named Black Beauty, beginning with his carefree days as a foal on an English farm, to his difficult life pulling cabs in London, to his happy retirement in the country. Along the way, he meets with many hardships and recounts many tales of cruelty and kindness. Each short chapter recounts an incident in Black Beauty's life containing a lesson or moral typically related to the kindness, sympathy, and understanding treatment due horses, with Sewell's detailed observations and extensive descriptions of horse behaviour lending the novel a good deal of verisimilitude.