By Duchess of Devonshire Georgiana, Georgiana Spencer Cavendish Devonshire
Released anonymously in 1773 and attributed to Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, this epistolary novel explores the "unfortunate attachment" of Emma Eggerton to William Walpole. Forbidden through her father to marry the fellow she loves, Emma resigns herself to marrying Walpole, her father's autocratic collection of a husband. The novel's different unlucky attachment issues Colonel Sutton, who falls prey to the "low" machinations of the proven flirt Harriet Courtney. Like Jane Austen's satisfaction and Prejudice, Georgiana's Emma explores the risks of first impressions and organized marriages, yet does so from the vantage aspect of a girl who may endure the long term effects of either. initially released whilst the writer was once purely 16, and lengthy out of print, Emma anticipates a few of the significant occasions of Georgiana's personal existence, and brought along with her moment novel, The Sylph, it bargains major insights into the outlook of aristocratic girls within the overdue eighteenth century. An creation through Jonathan David Gross units the radical within the context of its time and explores the questions surrounding its authorship.
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Additional info for Emma, Or The Unfortunate Attachment: A Sentimental Novel
Like Lady Melbourne and Charles Grey, Lady Georgiana viewed the French Revolution more sympathetically than such social activists as Hannah More. Lady Georgiana followed the example of Charles James Fox—a “man of the people” who never doubted that an aristocratic class should lead the common people. Like Fox, she favored the French Revolution and the liberalization of English domestic laws. She could also be intensely patriotic, however, and organized a female brigade at Coxheath in Kent when her husband was engaged in military exercises in June 1778.
These activities suggest that Lady Georgiana supported, however indirectly, a more radical political agenda than her social class may have allowed; though she kept the appearance of a “proper lady,” her role as an arbitress of fashion—in clothing and in literature—helped her to shape, rather than merely follow, current tastes. Though a less accomplished writer than the generation that followed her, Lady Georgiana may nevertheless have inﬂuenced them. One astute reader of Emma notes how Priscilla’s sister, who is ruined by a love match with a young naval ofﬁcer, Mr.
James. Included among these were her future husband and friend, Charles James Fox, both of whom frequented Boodle’s, at 28 St. James Street (the haunt of Lady Georgiana’s ﬁctional character, William Walpole). Other dandies drawn from personal knowledge include the husband of Anne Damer (1749– 1828), one of Lady Georgiana’s closer friends. John Damer shot himself in a London tavern on August 15, 1776, when the extent of his gambling debts became clear. Damer’s wardrobe alone was assessed at over 15,000 pounds, but he left no political accomplishments behind to compare with those of his illustrious Whig predecessors.
Emma, Or The Unfortunate Attachment: A Sentimental Novel by Duchess of Devonshire Georgiana, Georgiana Spencer Cavendish Devonshire