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In the short story The Manhood of Edward Robinson, Edward Robinson is city clerk with a problem. He has a good job with a good firm and is engaged to Maud whom he loves very much.

However Maud is a little too clever, practical and sensible for Edward. She constantly reproaches him for spending too much money. When he takes her to the cinema, she chides him for spending money on good seats when cheaper seats would do. When he bought an engagement ring for her, she made him take it back and exchange it for a cheaper one. He wants very much to be married soon but Maud wants to wait until they have saved more money, perhaps in a year or two. Edward loved her but found her "sharp in manner" and always "too prone to jump on him". Her qualities were, to him, all excellent qualities but he wished she had more faults and fewer virtues.

Hence when Edward won 500 pounds in a newspaper competition, he decided to spend it on a red sports car. He knew that if he told Maud about the money, she would want it invested somewhere to provide a nest egg. Instead, he decided, for once in his life, to do what he wanted with it. It was this car which led him into a desperate adventure which eventually brought out the manhood in him.

Portrayals

In the episode The Manhood of Edward Robinson of The Agatha Christie Hour, a TV film adaptation of the story, the part of Edward Robinson is played by Nicholas Farrell.

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