Standard Ebooks

The Moon and Sixpence

W. Somerset Maugham


The Moon and Sixpence tells the story of English stockbroker Charles Strickland, who abandons his wife and child to travel to Paris to become a painter. First published in 1919 in the United Kingdom by Heinemann, the story is inspired by the life of the French artist Paul Gauguin. It’s told in episodic form from a first-person perspective. The narrator, who came to know Strickland through his wife’s literary parties, begins the story as Strickland leaves for Paris. Strickland’s new life becomes a stark contrast to his life in London. While he was once a well-off banker living a comfortable life, he must now sleep in cheap hotels while suffering both illness and hunger.

Maugham spent a year in Paris in 1904, which is when he first heard the story of Gauguin, the banker who left his family and profession to pursue his passion for art. He heard the story from others who had known and worked with Gauguin. Ten years later Maugham travelled to Tahiti where he met others who had known Gauguin during the artist’s time there. Inspired by the stories he heard, Maugham wrote The Moon and Sixpence. Although based on the life of Paul Gauguin, the story is a work of fiction.

Read free

This ebook is thought to be free of copyright restrictions in the United States. It may still be under copyright in other countries. If you’re not located in the United States, you must check your local laws to verify that this ebook is free of copyright restrictions in the country you’re located in before accessing, downloading, or using it.

Download for ereaders

Read online

A brief history of this ebook

  1. Update accessibility boilerplate

  2. Update Onix file boilerplate

  3. Update metadata boilerplate

  4. Update core.css to new standards

  5. Semanticate

More details



Page scans

Improve this ebook

Anyone can contribute to make a Standard Ebook better for everyone!

To report typos, typography errors, or other corrections, see how to report errors.

If you’re comfortable with technology and want to contribute directly, check out this ebook’s GitHub repository and our contributors section.

You can also donate to Standard Ebooks to help fund continuing improvement of this and other ebooks.