Study Guide

Black Beauty What's Up With the Title?

By Anna Sewell

What's Up With the Title?

So at first glance, Black Beauty seems to be a title that goes straight for the obvious choice. But one thing to remember? The horse we know as Black Beauty has many different names in this book. In fact, each new master calls him something different, including Darkie, Black Auster, and even Old Crony, just to name a few.

So why did Sewell call the book Black Beauty? Beauty goes by this name at Birtwick Park, a place he lives quite happily for a long time. So perhaps Sewell wants us to remember that the horse he is at Birtwick—happy, healthy, and surrounded by friends—is the truest version of Beauty. Fittingly, at the book's end, Beauty's loving new owners remember him as Squire Gordon's Black Beauty and call him this name once again. For Beauty, this name is linked with good treatment, kindness, and love, which is exactly the connection Sewell wants readers to make with animals.

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