Josiah Horatio Nelson is born to unusual parents. Having met in a psychiatric hospital, they decide to bring up their child far away from the constraints of conventional society. But social services soon intervene to remove him from his idyllic home. Friendless, ostracised and bullied, Josiah is saved from despair when he meets his Latin tutor,Thomas Marius, with whom he soon forms an intense relationship. Marius takes him to Italy on an educational visit but returns to find he is suspected of child abuse...