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have avoided several material misapprehensions and misstatements, which it is difficult to reconcile with the friendly tone of the article or the known ability of the writer.

Envy at Piozzi's good fortune sharpened the animosity of assailants like Baretti, and the loss of a pleasant house may have had a good deal to do with the sorrowing indignation of her set. Her meditated social extinction amongst them might have been commemorated in the words of the French epitaph:

"Ci git une de qui la vertu

Etait moins que la table encensée;
On ne plaint point la femme abattue,
Mais bien la table renversée."

Which may be freely rendered:

"Here lies one who adulation

By dinners more than virtues earn'd;

Whose friends mourned not her reputation ·

But her table - overturned."

Madame D'Arblay has recorded what took place between Mrs. Piozzi and herself on the occasion:

Miss F. Burney to Mrs. Piozzi.

"Norbury Park, Aug. 10, 1784.

"When my wondering eyes first looked over the letter I received last night, my mind instantly dictated a hgh-spirited vindication of the consistency, integrity, and faithfulness of the friendship thus abruptly re

proached and cast away. But a sleepless night gave me leisure to recollect that you were ever as generous as precipitate, and that your own heart would do justice to mine, in the cooler judgment of future reflection. Committing myself, therefore, to that period, I determined simply to assure you, that if my last letter hurt either you or Mr. Piozzi, I am no less sorry than surprised; and that if it offended you, I sincerely beg your pardon.

"Not to that time, however, can I wait to acknowledge the pain an accusation so unexpected has caused me, nor the heartfelt satisfaction with which I shall receive, when you are able to write it, a softer renewal of regard.

"May Heaven direct and bless you!

"F. B.


This is the sketch of the answer which F. B. most painfully wrote to the unmerited reproach of not sending cordial congratulations upon a marriage which she had uniformly, openly, and with deep and avowed affliction, thought wrong."

Mrs. Piozzi to Miss Burney.

"Wellbeck Street, No. 33, Cavendish Square. Friday, Aug. 13, 1784.


"Give yourself no serious concern, sweetest Burney, All is well, and I am too happy myself to make a friend

otherwise; quiet your kind heart immediately, and love my husband if you love his and your

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"N.B. To this kind note, F. B. wrote the warmest and most affectionate and heartfelt reply; but never received another word! And here and thus stopped a correspondence of six years of almost unequalled partiality, and fondness on her side; and affection, gratitude, admiration, and sincerity on that of F. B., who could only conjecture the cessation to be caused by the resentment of Piozzi, when informed of her constant opposition to the union."

If F. B. thought it wrong, she knew it to be inevitable, and in the conviction that it was so, she and her father had connived at the secret preparations for it in the preceding May.

A very distinguished friend, whose masterly works are the result of a consummate study of the passions, after dwelling on the "impertinence" of the hostility her marriage provoked, writes: "She was evidently a very vain woman, but her vanity was sensitive, and very much allied to that exactingness of heart which gives charm and character to woman. I suspect it was this sensitiveness which made her misunderstood by her children." The justness of this theory of her conduct is demonstrated by the self-communings in "Thraliana;" and she misunderstood them as much as they misunderstood her. By her own

showing she had little reason to complain of what they did in the matter of the marriage; it was what they said, or rather did not say, that irritated her. She yearned for sympathy, which was sternly, chillingly, almost insultingly withheld.

In 1800, she wrote thus to Dr. Gray: "What a good example have you set them (his children)! going to visit dear mama at Twickenham-long may they keep their parents, pretty creatures! and long may they have sense to know and feel that no love is like parental affection, the only good perhaps which cannot be flung away."*

Madame D'Arblay states that her father was not disinclined to admit Mrs. Piozzi's right to consult her own notions of happiness in the choice of a second husband, had not the paramount duty of watching over her unmarried daughters interfered. But they might have accompanied her to Italy as was once contemplated; and had they done so, they would have seen everything and everybody in it under the most favourable auspices. The course chosen for them by the eldest was the most perilous of the two submitted for their choice. The lady, Miss Nicholson, whom their mother had so carefully selected as their companion, soon left them; or according to another version was summarily dismissed by Miss Thrale (afterwards Viscountess Keith), who

"We may have many friends in life, but we can only have one mother: a discovery, says Gray, which I never made till it was too late.". ROGERS.

fortunately was endowed with high principle, firmness, and energy. She could not take up her abode with either of her guardians, one a bachelor under forty, the other the prototype of Briggs, the old miser in "Cæcilia." She could not accept Johnson's hospitality in Bolt Court, still tenanted by the survivors of his menagerie; where, a few months later, she sate by his death-bed and received his blessing. She therefore called to her aid an old nurse-maid, named Tib, who had been much trusted by her father, and with this homely but respectable duenna, she shut herself up in the house at Brighton, limited her expenses to her allowance of 200l. a-year, and resolutely set about the course of study which seemed best adapted to absorb attention and prevent her thoughts from wandering. Hebrew, Mathematics, Fortification, and Perspective have been named to me by one of trusted friends as specimens of her acquirements and her pursuits.

"There's a Divinity that shapes our ends,
Rough-hew them how we may."

In that solitary abode at Brighton, and in the companionship of Tib, may have been laid the foundation of a character than which few, through the changeful scenes of a long and prosperous life, have exercised more beneficial influence or inspired more genuine esteem. On coming of age, and being put into possession of her fortune, she hired a house in London,

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