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is, to what they used to be."* Her affection for prejudices to overcome, so I deserve no praise for Ireland was, if I may be allowed the term, philo- being without them.” Miss Edgeworth never sophic; she saw clearly the perfections and the wrote that other people might practise, but she faults of the people; she admired the one and wrote what her and hers practised daily ;-it was knew the remedy for the other ; her devotion to evident, from the children being constantly with the country was not blind, but it was earnest, pa- the family, that they still held by the opinion that tient, and of working, as well as of thinking power, intercourse betwen children and servants is injuriwithout the cant which has been the bane of one ous to the former. “ We believe in it," said party, and the bigotry that has blinded the other; Miss Edgeworth ; " but I have long learned how her religious and political faith were alike chris- very impossible it is for others to practise it. My Tian, in the most extended sense of that holy father made it easy ; for not only his wife, but his word.
children, knew all his affairs. Whatever business These extended views and enlarged sympathies he had to do was done in the midst of his family, were beyond the comprehension of many ; but usually in the common sitting-room ; so that we even the squirearchy, who, I have heard, were en were intimately acquainted, not only with his genraged at the publication of “ Castle Rackrent,” eral principles of conduct, but with the most miand the ladies, who fancied the picture of Mrs. nute details of their every-day application." O'Rafferty, in “The Absentee,” an insult to the Of this habit she spoke with the warmest feel“ ladies” of Dublin, forgave her for the sweet sake ings of approbation and gratitude, and it produced of “Gracey Nowlan," and the exquisite fidelity a rich fruitage. Mr. Edgeworth's daughter Hoof “Old Thady.” |
nora, if she had lived, would have perhaps rivalled I remember saying to her, how happy it was Maria in literary composition ; and each of the for Ireland that she had overcome every religious family I have met was possessed of varied but most prejudice.
remarkable and well developed qualities. It is “Ah!" she exclaimed, “ I never had religious quite impossible to recall Edgeworthstown with
out recalling the memory of its FOUNDER, as Mr. * On returning to Dublin from Edgeworthstown, I was Richard Lovell Edgeworth may be considered, convinced of the truth of this observation ; while waiting though he was preceded by many rich in talent for change of horses at Maynooth, the carriage was, as usual, surrounded by beggars, one after another; they and high in station. While staying there, even begged for everything they could think of : « A little six: I, as a stranger, felt what I may call " his presa pence, yer honor, just for the honor of Ould Ireland and good luck." "It's only the half of that, or a fourpenny ence” everywhere. She, of whom I write, had bit, I'd be axing, that you might n't dirty yer glove with sat beneath his shadow while she labored, and imthem mane ha'pence." " May be ye 'd have a bit of bread; bibed much of his combined philosophy and activor anything, to stop the hunger of the children, my lady;": and, at last, when the horses were about to start, an old ity; and the daughters of his house were crone exclaimed, " Ah, then lave us the bit of a newspa- remarkable for their strength and powers of mind, per ilself, to amuse us whin ye're gone!”
1. On looking back to Miss Edgeworth's letters (all of as for the beautiful womanliness of character, of which are dated) I find in one, bearing date April 8, 1832, which Maria Edgeworth was the perfection. these few remarks about Ireland, which apply to the pres. ent, as well as the past :-“I fear we have much to go
Miss Edgeworth said, it was in 1778 that Mrs. through in this country before we come to quiet, settled Honora Edgeworth, while teaching her first child life, and a ready obedience to the laws. There is literal; to read, found the want of something to follow Mrs. ly no rein of law at this moment to hold the Irish ; and Barbauld's lessons, and felt the difficulty of exthrough the whole country, there is what I cannot justly call a spirit of REFORM, but a spirit of REVOLUTION, under plaining the language of the books for children the name of reform; a restless desire to overthrow what which were then in use. She imparted this diffiis, and a hope, more than a hope, an expectation, of gaining liberty and wealth, or both, in the struggle ; and if they culty to her husband, and they commenced for their do gain either, they will lose both again, and he worse own children the first part of " Harry and Lucy," selves, destroy one another, and be again enslaved with or of “ Practical Education,” as I saw it called, on heavier chains. I am, and have been all my life, a sin- the title-page of one of the first copies, printed cere friend to moderate measures, as long as reason can literally for their own children. Mr. Edgeworth be heard ; but there comes a time, at the actual commenceinent of uproar, when reason cannot be heard, and intended to have carried on the history of “ Harwhen the ultimate law of force must be resorted to, to ry and Lucy” through every stage of childhood ; prevent greater evils-that time was lost in the beginning to have diffused through an interesting story the of the French revolution-I hope it may not now be lost in Ireland. It is scarcely possible that this country can first principles of morality, with some of the elenow be tranquillized without military force to reestab- ments of science and literature, so as to show lish law; the people must be made to obey the laws, or they cannot be ruled after any concessions. Nor would parents how these may be taught, without wearythe mob be able to rule if they got all they desire ; they | ing the pupil's attention. No writer of eminence, famish sober. The misfortune of this country has been except Dr. Watts and Mrs. Barbauld, had at that that England has always yielded to clamor what should time condescended to write for children. How have been granted to juslice.". With such sentiments, many have since rushed into so popular and lucraof her Father " to have been the result of observation and tive a track, the multitude of juvenile books supa companionship with him, from the time of his settling ply evidence ; but we may readily confess how on his estate at Edgeworthstown, in 1782, until the time much we have all fallen short of our great originof his death, a period of nearly five-and-thirty years, no wonder that the grand agitator of Ireland so frequently ator.
It is curious to remember that Mr. Day, regretted that Maria Edge worth “could not be tempted to one of Mr. Edgeworth's oldest friends, designed advocate repeal.”
“ Sanford and Merton,” as a short story to be in
serted in “Harry and Lucy.” The illness of Some of the "unco good” have complained of Mrs. Honora Edgeworth interrupted the progress what they call the want of religious, but what I of that volume ; " and after her death,” Miss Edge-should rather call sectarian, instruction, in Miss worth said, “ her father could not bear to continue Edgeworth's juvenile works. “We wrote," she it.” Thus “Harry and Lucy' remained for more said to me, “ for every sect, and did not, nor do I than twenty years with the first part printed, but now, think it right to introduce the awful idea of not published. It was then given Maria Edge- God's superintendence upon puerile occasions. I worth for a part of
Early Lessons." * Long as hold religion in a more exalted view than as a subMr. Edgeworth had been dead, he was constantly ject of perpetual outward exhibition. Many dignireferred to by his family, as if he had only left the taries of the established church honored my father room, in the simplest and most touching manner ; by their esteem and private friendship; this could but when Miss Edgeworth spoke of him for any not have been, had they believed him to be either length of time, her eyes would fill with tears. an open or concealed enemy to Christianity.” CerHis mind was so inventive that nothing seemed tainly, as a magistrate, as a member of the Board new at Edgeworthstown. He appears to have an- of Education, as a member of Parliament, Mr. ticipated all modern improvements ; " and yet,” Edgeworth had public opportunities of recording said Miss Edgeworth, “ all his literary ambition, his opinions; and there is no trace, that I could then and ever, was for me!”
ever discover, of his desiring to found a system of As the interdict will prevent Miss Edgeworth's morality exclusive of religion. Unfortunately, in family from publishing her life and correspondence, Ireland, if you are not—I do not like the word, but I cannot but think that a new edition of her fath- I can find no other-bigotted, to one or the other er's life, produced in a popular form, would be of party, you are marked and stigmatized as irreligious the greatest value to all classes of the community ; -or worse-by both. the second volume, written by Miss Edgeworth, is I do not design to write a panegyric. Miss Edgeso unaffectedly herself, while she seeks to illus- worth's own works will suffice for that; they are trate the character of her beloved father, that it imperishable monuments of her usefulness and her should find a place on every table, and be of de- “ good will," especially towards the country of her cided advantage to parents in training their chil- adoption and towards children. But even after a dren. I remember once her detailing to me the visit to Edgeworthstown, where a natural habit of plot of a novel she intended writing, and telling observation, as well as a desire to read her rightly, me at the same time that she had destroyed seven made me more than usually awake to every word hundred pages of a manuscript, because she did and every passing incident-bright days of ramnot think it good enough to publish. I remember bling and sunshine, and dark days of rain and conhow I regretted this, and found consolation in the versation with her and hers- seeing her thus away hope that one day or other the publication of her from the meretricious glare and false lights of Lonletters would atone for the loss. I knew that she don society, where I had first met her-in the trywas incapable of keeping a journal,”—a "pri- ing seclusion of a country house, in the midst of a vate" journal-intended, from the first page to the most mingled family-where her father's last wife last, for the public; and that she was too honora- was many years younger than herself, and the half ble to keep letters which ought to be destroyed when foreign children and foreign wife of her youngest read, but it seems like casting gold into a grave to brother rendered the mingling still more extraordidestroy a line that she has left! +
nary-recalling all seen and known of other fami*"After Practical Education, the next book which lies, where children of the same parents 100 seldom we published in partnership was, in 1803, the Essay on live together in unity– I remember nothing that at Irish Bulls ;' the first design of this essay was bis ; under the semblance of attack he wished to show the English bitter feelings at her loss. Her friendship and sympathy public the eloquence, wit, and talents of the lower classes were as alive at eighty-two, as if she had been in what is of people in Ireland. Working zealously upon the ideas called "the prime of life.”' Her praise had cheered, and which he suggested, sometimes what was spoken by him, her criticism guided me on my way: Public approbation was afterwards written by me; or when I wrote my first is necessary to an author's living ; but her sympathy and thoughts, they were corrected and improved by him. kindness seemed necessary to my literary fame. If " The
This I quote from Miss Edgeworth's Life of her father, Sketches of Irish Character" won her first attention, everywhere her truthfulness flashes ever and anon, like dia- thing I since published seemed to freshen our correspon. monds in a rich setting-oh, how bright and beautiful it dence ; and I so grieve that she can never see the result of is! what a halo it sheds around her memory! On this much she suggested in what I have been some time writ. same page, she says again, "All passages in which there ing. Proud as I am of many of her letters, they relate so are Latin quotations, or classical allusions, must be his almost entirely to ourselves that I feel it would be egotism exclusively, because I am entirely ignorant of the learned to publish them. Whenever a passage occurred in her languages." What a reproof is this to lady-authors, letier, or indeed in any letter I wish to preserve, that who hunt out "learned quotations,” that they may seem oughi to be kept secret, I am not content with refolding leurned; in truth, justice, and generosity, she was with the letter and putting it by, I cut out and destroy
pasout parallel. I could quote page after page of praise of sage. This I consider it only honest to do, for we have cotemporary novelists from her leiters, which show her no right to trust for a moment to others, here or hereafter, mental generosity; and this is the true test of generosity, what is trusted only to ourselves. I am certain that it is 10 praise the excellence that illumines our oven path; the the excess (if I may so call it) of this moral honesty musician will praise the poet without a pang of envy, the which urged Miss Edgeworth's determination that her poet the musician; but let musician praise musician, and correspondence should not be published. I believe she poet poet, and painter painter, and author author-that is intended to "cut it,” to revise i herself, but as this was ihe test by which a reputation for genuine generosity not done, she preferred consiguing the whole to oblivion, ought to stand or fall.
rather than to running the risk of any feelings being † It seems, and perhaps is selfish, in this truly public wounded, or opinions intended only for her own eye being calamity of Miss Edgeworth's death, to dwell on iny own / sent abroad to the world.
this distance of time does not excite my admiration | lived in the house of happiness with them, can and increase my affection for this admirable woman, hardly imagine, much less describe, the lonely combining in her small self whatever we believe to blank that is left-more particularly in the heart of be most deserving of praise in her sex. She was the venerable lady, who must now feel the want of a literary woman, without vanity, affectation, or object, the want of counsel, the want of sympathy jealousy—a very sunbeam of light, in a home ren--the want of one who filled her thoughts from dered historic by her genius-a perfect woman in morning till night, either to share her sorrows or her attention to those little offices of love and kind- enjoyments, and make up by unceasing love and ness which sanctify domestic life; a patriot, but not pity, the one for the other, the heavy losses they a political--the champion of a country's virtues, both sustained, particularly within the last few without being blind either to its follies or its crimes. years, by the death of Mrs. Edgeworth's beloved Honored wherever her name was heard during half children-almost, if not quite, as dear to the one as a century of literary industry-idolized by a family to the other ; but I can picture the mourning vilcomposed as I have said of many members under lage when she was carried within that church, and one roof, yet tuned into matchless harmony by ad- laid in her father's tomb, beneath the shadow of mirable management and right affection ;*—this the spire,' which tells of his invention and perseverwoman, so loved, so honored, so cherished to the ance, as well as his desire to add to the beauty of very last, was entirely unselfish. I have said this the Christian church of his own parish–I can fancy before, and repeating it cannot give strength to the the wail of the weeping children of the schools, and fact; but I have so often felt benefit from her ex- the utter desolation which reigns in that once cheerample and the consideration of her virtues, that I ful library. All that relates to this honored and desire others, especially the young of my own sex, honorable family is becoming matter of history; to do the same. During her last visit to London, I and in a short space of time, hundreds who have still thought her unchanged ; like Scott, she was learned all the good that books can teach from those not seen to the same advantage in London crowds, imperishable monuments of Maria Edgeworth's as amid the home circle at Edgeworthstown. Our zeal and industry in every good cause, will make last meeting was at her beloved sister's, Mrs. Wil- pilgrimages to her shrine—the neutral ground of son, in North Audley street. She was there the Ireland—where all may worship, without idolatry, centre of attraction amongst those of the highest the ESSENCE of as pure, as high a nature, as ever standing in literature ; the hot room and the pre- ascended in the spirit of faith to the throne of the sentations wearied her, and so her anxious sister Supreme. thought; but she again, like Scott, was the gen- to which this is a reply, the 1st of last January, the day tlest of lions, and suffered to admiration. When I she completed her eighty-second birthday. It shows
how bright and kind she was ever, and to the last :was going, she pressed my hand and whispered, “We will make up for this at Edgeworthstown." note, was the very pleasantest I received on my birth
“My dear Mrs. Hall,-Your cordial, warm-hearted I certainly did not think I should see her no more day, except those from my own family: in this world. I have imagined the half hour of her
"I am truly obliged to you for it, and quite touched by
your kind remembrance. illness in that now desolate monument of so much
“Mrs. Edgeworth felt it as I do, and so did a sister that was great and good; a brother and sister—the of mine, whom you do not know, but whom you would brother nearly half a century younger than Maria like very much if you did know her, Mrs. Builer-' the
Harrietie Edgeworth'—justly described in Sir Walter
“I hope you and Mr. Hall will revisit Ireland one of The widow of her father, and the widow of her Edgeworihstown. You must not delay long if you mean
these days, and that you will make your way again to tenderly-loved brother knew that she had written a to see me again ; remember, you bave just congratulated note to Dr. Marsh complaining of not being as well me on my eighty-second birthday.
"I wish you would be so very kind as to give me as a as usual ; yet bad felt little alarm. In less than birthday present yours and Mr. Hall's third volume of half an hour after this letter was written, Mrs. " Ireland. I have only one number of it, that which cost Edgeworth went into Miss Edgeworth's bed-room- ified me and my family so much, from the manner you
you so much thought and care to word ; and which gratthe little room that overlooked her flower-garden- mentioned us, saying nothing we could wish unsaid. stood by her bedside, became alarmed ; and passing
“I am ashamed to beg this volume from you, but I do
so wish to have it from the kind author, that I cannot her arm under her head, turned it on her shoulder, refrain from making this request. If there be any of so as to raise her up. After the lapse of a few mine that you would accept, or if your dear little girl minutes, she felt neither motion nor breath ; and it would like to have a set of my little books, just now rewas only the form of her long cherished and beloved published, let me know, and I will have them sent to you.";
My "little girl" rejoiced as much at this prospect as I friend that she pressed to her bosom. She died in should have done at her age ; but the following little cirher eighty-third year, it may be truly said full of cumstance marks the charming mind of the giver. The
books came from the London publisher's, but Miss Edgeyears and honors.
worth had enclosed him, writien with her own hand, on I, who knew her so long and so well, who have slips of paper, " To Mrs. S. C. Hall's dear good little
girl. From Maria Edgeworth, in her eighty-third year." * It would seem that the family of Edgeworth were as And these were carefully pasted, by her direction, in each united in 1344, when I visited them, as in 1796, when volume. In the same leiter, the last but one I received Mr. Edgeworth, in a letter to Doctor Darwin, wrote the from her, she asks, in a postscript,“ Who translated Madfollowing passage :-"I do not think one tear per month emoiselle de Montpensier's Memoirs lately, and what is shed in this house, nor the voice of reproof heard, nor proof of their authenticity? I believe I must write to the hand of restraint felt."
Paris to get an answer satisfactory to this last question. + I honored her birthday as I do my mother's, and The translation (?) reads like an original.” She was so managed she should receive the letter of congratulation, I actively alive to whatever was going on.
THE COUNTESS OF BLESSINGTON.
From Tait's Magazine. other places in Italy. At Genoa, in 1823, Lady
Blessington met Lord Byron for the first time, and afterwards saw him daily for a considerable
period during her residence in that city. The Ar Paris, of apoplexy, on the 4th of June, the readers of Moore's Life of Byron will remember Right Hon. Marguerite, Countess of Blessington, the many occasions which he pays tribute to her celebrated for her beauty, her accomplishments, intellectual and personal gifts and graces. One and her literary productions. The day previous or two copies of verses were addressed by the to her death, she dined with the Duchess de noble bard to her ladyship, and several letters Grammont, when she appeared in her usual from him to her, as well as to the earl, her hushealth. Next morning, feeling ill, she sent for band, are found in his published correspondence. her medical attendant, Dr. Simon, the homæo- On the evening before their departure from Genoa, pathic doctor. A short time afterwards she ex- Byron called on Lord and Lady Blessington, for pired in his presence. It is little more than two the purpose of taking leave, and sat conversing months since she gave up her splendid residence for some time. On this occasion he gave utterat Gore House, Kensington, to go and live at ance to an ominous presentiment that had taken Paris ; and only two days before her death, she possession of his mind—that he should die in got possession of her new house in the Rue de Greece, for which he vas making preparation to Cercle, where her delightful reunions, for which sail. “ Here,” said he, “ we are all now toshe was so highly famed, were eagerly looked gether—but when, and where, shall we meet forward to by the notables and litterateurs of again? I have a sort of boding that we see each Paris.
other for the last time ; as something tells me I Few names were better known in the world of shall never return from Greece.” He presented literature than was that of Lady Blessington. to each of the party some little farewell gift. To She was a native of Ireland ; born in 1789 ; the Lady Blessington he gave a copy of his Armenian daughter of Edmund Power, Esq., of Curragheen, grammar, which had some manuscript remarks of county of Waterford, and the half-sister of the his own on the leaves. In parting with her, he late eminent actor, Tyrone Power, Esq., who was requested, as a memorial, some trifle which she lost in the President steamer, on his return to this had worn, when her ladyship gave him one of her country, from America. At the age of 15, she rings. In return, he took a pin from his breast, was married to M. St. Leger Farmer, Esq., of containing a small cameo of Napoleon—which Poplar Hall, county Kildare, captain in the 47th had long been his companion—and presented it to Regiment. After his death, she lived under the Lady Blessington. Next day, June 2, 1823, she protection of an officer, and was also intimate received a note from him, stating that he was with Lord Blessington, who was likewise in the "superstitious, and recollected that memorials army. In 1818, she was united to the latter, with a point are of less fortunate augury." He Charles John Gardiner, Earl of Blessington, Vis- therefore requested back the pin, and sent her a count and Baron Mountjoy, who died, without chain instead. Her society was courted abroad issue, in 1829, when his titles became extinct. by the most distinguished persons, especially by After the earl's death, she fixed her residence in the members of the Napoleon family, with many London, and long held a very distinguished place of whom, and particularly with Prince Louis Nain the literary society of the metropolis. Her poleon, now President of the French republic, house became the centre-point of men of talent in she was on terms of intimacy. almost all departments ; and many of the literary Lady Blessington's contributions to literature celebrities of London were frequently found there were numerous. Her first work was entitled, we as visitors. On more occasions than one she believe, “ The Magic Lantern, or Scenes in the showed herself the friend of obscure but deserv- Metropolis," a small single volume of very modest ing genius. Of this, her notice of Thomas Mil- pretensions, published by Longman, and Co., about ler, the basket-maker, author of “ Royston Gower," twenty-five years ago. Her next publication was affords a remarkable instance. As soon as he be- also a small volume, “A Tour in the Nethercame known by his writings, Lady Blessington lands,” of no great merit. Her “ Conversations sent for him, recommended his book, and did him with Lord Byron," in one volume, commanded substantial service. Often,'
," Miller himself more attention. In her preface to this work, she says, “ have I been sitting in Lady Blessington's states that “ she was for a long time undecided as splendid drawing-room in the morning, talking to publishing her Conversations with the noble and laughing as familiar as in the old house at poet, fearful that, by the invidious, it might be home, and, in the same evening, I might have considered as a breach of confidence ; but as Bosbeen seen standing on Westminster bridge, be- well's and Mrs. Piozzi's disclosures relative to Dr. tween an apple-vender and a baked-potato mer- Johnson were never viewed in this light, and as chant, vending my baskets."
Lord Byron never gave or implied the slightest After their marriage, the earl and countess injunction to secresy, she expresses a hope that passed several years abroad. In August, 1822, she may equally escape such an imputation." they left England for the continent, and resided The work, on its appearance, was declared to be for about six years at Genoa and Naples, and the cleverest and one of the most interesting
things that had been written on Lord Byron ; un- novel, in 3 volumes, full of sarcastic hits, written folding with all possible delicacy, consideration, in her pleasantest style. The same year, she and good nature, his true character-even to its edited “ Lionel Deerhurst," another novel, in 3 inmost recesses.
volumes. The Countess also wrote “ Sketches In 1833, her ladyship published her first novel, and Fragments,” and numerous magazine articles. “Grace Cassidy, or the Repealers," in three vol. Besides the works mentioned, she, for years, ed
The object of this work was to show the ited “ The Book of Beauty," the most fashionaartifices by which the agitation for repeal became ble of the annuals, and displayed fine taste, and popular in Ireland, and the circumstances in the the most discriminating judgment in the task. character of the people, and the condition of the To that and other illustrated publications she country, which render the Irish peasantry so contributed several short stories and poems of a peculiarly liable to be led away by it. With superior kind. In painting manners, her ladyship this it combined the delineation of modern fash- excelled. Her style is remarkable for its graceionable society, in certain of its aspects. The fulness. Her plots are, in general, simple ; and work contains scarcely any plot, the greater part of all her writings it may truly be said, that they being occupied with dialogues, criticism, and re were dictated by sound sense and right feeling. flections. Some of the scenes in fashionable life, Her recollections of Italy and France are, perhowever, are full of power and beauty ; and the haps, the best of her works, being full of perauthoress has been very successful in painting the sonal anecdote, epigram, sentiment, and descripfeelings, habits, and motives of the Irish peas- tion. antry. One female sketch, in particular-that of Lady Blessington was no less famed for her Grace Cassidy, a young Irish wife-is remarka- beauty than for her literary talents. Byron well bly well depicted. In the beginning of 1835, she described her as the “ most gorgeous Lady Blespublished " The Two Friends,” another novel, in sington.” The engraved portrait of her, from three volumes, the chief merit of which is its the original, by Sir Thomas Lawrence, gives the lively and pleasant style, and truthful delineation best likeness of her ladyship, and conveys the best of manners and character. The scene is partly idea of her voluptuous beauty. Her sister was laid in France, at the period of the revolution of the late Lady Canterbury, previously the widow 1830, and the Parisian sketches are peculiarly in- of the son of the then Sir Alexander Purvis. A teresting. In this, as in others of her works, her younger sister was married, in 1832, to a French ladyship has made good use of her store of trav- nobleman. The Earl of Blessington, by his first elled recollections of the continent.
wife, the widow of a brother officer, had a daughIn 1836, her ladyship published a work, called ter, Lady Harriet Anne Frances, born in 1812, “ Confessions of an Elderly Gentleman,” illus- who, in 1827, married Alfred Count D'Orsay, trated with six portraits, &c., by E. Parris. It from whom she separated soon aster. She has embodies, in six tales, the different love-passages continued to reside chiefly in Paris, her husband and marriage disappointments, in the life of the el- and mother-in-law living in London, first in Berkderly gentleman ; and its principal merit is its truth ley Square, and subsequently at Gore House. and humor. She subsequently published “ Con- Count D'Orsay has also, we believe, gone to refessions of an Elderly Lady,” also an ably con- side at Paris. ceived and vividly-written imaginary memoir. She likewise wrote “ Desultory Thoughts and Reflections," a work little known, but worthy of remembrance, for the philosophical, yet feminine, Ar Paris, of cholera, after only 24 hours' illspirit in which it is conceived. It is in the style ness, the celebrated cantatrice, Madame Catalani, of the maxims of La Rochefaucauld, but presents in her 70th year. She was an Italian by birth, a much more cheering view of human nature. although, as in the case of Jenny Lind, there Her other works are “ The Belle of the Season," were not wanting, at various times, statements in “ The Idler in Italy,” 3 vols., 1839–40 ; “ The the public prints, making her out to have been in Idler in France," 2 vols., 1841; “ The Govern- reality a native of Ireland, but taken to Italy when
Meredith ;" The Lottery of Lise;" very young, and educated there. The “ Athe“ Strathern ;” and “The Victim of Society.” næum” says that the late Lady Blessington, and This last work appeared in 1837, and both in its her sister, too, Lady Canterbury, both declared general scope and the artistic manner in which themselves in possession of evidence tending to its subject is treated, it has been said to be not in- establish a not very near relationship betwixt ferior lo Miss Edgeworth's “ Leonora.” It is a Madame Catalani and themselves ; their version tale of modern society, written in the form of let- of her parentage being that her mother was a ters, her ladyship being fond of the autobiograph- kinswoman of theirs, and that the child had been ical and narrative style of telling a story. The carried to Italy at an early age. There was cerplot, contrary to the usual practice in her novels, tainly a resemblance among these three beautiful is constructed with force and skill, and the char- women strong enough to pass for a family likeacters, principal and accessory, are well sustained. ness when attention had once been called to the Her latest work, published in 1846, entitled “Me- subject. Previous to her coming to England she moirs of a Femme de Chambre,” is a sprightly had obtained a high reputation on the continent as
ess ;" "