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Presented through an ingeniously overlapping and intertwining series of letters written by six very different characters, The Expedition of Humphry Clinker is the story of Squire Matthew Bramble and his family's journey across England and Scotland. From the gouty hypochondriac squire eager to take the waters in various spa towns to his malapropistic sister Tabitha, who is keenly looking for a husband, the characters recount their own experiences, desires and particular version of events, and in doing so introduce the reader to the extraordinary exploits of the ostler Humphry Clinker.
Full of decadence, drunkenness and debauchery, and littered with double entendres, bawdy puns and scatological references, The Expedition of Humphry Clinker, published only a few months before Smollett's death, is a biting and sharply observed satire of the luxury and licentiousness of eighteenth-century society.