Trollope’s first novel was published in 1847, but his most famous works were those in the Barsetshire series. The first of these was The Warden (1855), and the second and now the most famous of all was Barchester Towers, published in 1857. A follower of Thackeray, Trollope was fond of the traditional virtues exhibited (at least in theory) by the English gentry and he despised the arrogance of the upper middle classes. However, in Barchester Towers, much of his venom is reserved for the squabbling that goes on among the clergy. A change in government to the Whigs scupper Archdeacon Grantly’s aim to take over the diocese as the outsider Dr Proudie is brought in instead. The battle for the position of bishop of Barchester is surprisingly fierce, as Grantly and his faction learn that Proudie is submissive to the domineering Mrs Proudie, and also to the vulgar little chaplain Mr Slope who runs much of Proudie’s official business. Ideological disputes and more simple acts of vanity and selfishness set affairs badly awry and with the added issue of who should take over Hiram’s Hospital. The villainous Slope rushes about falling in love and getting deeper and deeper into scandalous troubles until his undoing restores peace among the good people of the diocese.