Beaux and Belles of England

With the Lives of the Duchesses of Gordon and Devonshire by Grace and Philip Wharton

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Author: Mary Robinson
Language: English
Wordcount: 69,805 / 210 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 52
LoC Category: CT
Downloads: 652
mnybks.net#: 5947
Origin: gutenberg.org
Genre: Biography

The following brief memoirs of a beautiful, engaging, and, in many respects, highly gifted woman require little in the way of introduction. While we may trace same little negative disingenuousness in the writer, in regard to a due admission of her own failings, sufficient of uncoloured matter of fact remains to show the exposed situation of an unprotected beauty--or, what is worse, of a female of great personal and natural attraction, exposed to the gaze of libertine rank and fashion, under the mere nominal guardianship of a neglectful and profligate husband. Autobiography of this class is sometimes dangerous; not so that of Mrs. Robinson, who conceals not the thorns inherent in the paths along which vice externally scatters roses; For the rest, the arrangement of princely establishments in the way of amour is pleasantly portrayed in this brief volume, which in many respects is not without its moral. One at least is sufficiently obvious, and it will be found in the cold-hearted neglect which a woman of the most fascinating mental and personal attractions may encounter from those whose homage is merely sensual, and whose admiration is but a snare.

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olitude. This place remained in the situation in which I describe it in the year 1776, and probably may, in a more ruined state, continue so to this hour.

In this awe-inspiring habitation, which I shall henceforth denominate the Minster House, during a tempestuous night, on the 27th of November, 1758, I first opened my eyes to this world of duplicity and sorrow. I have often heard my mother say that a mare stormy hour she never remembered. The wind whistled round the dark pinnacles of the minster tower, and the rain beat in torrents against the casements of her chamber. Through life the tempest has followed my footsteps, and I have in vain looked for a short interval of repose from the perseverance of sorrow.

In the male line I am descended from a respectable family in Ireland, the original name of which was MacDermott. From an Irish estate, my great-grandfather changed it to that of Darby. My father, who was born in America, was a man of strong mind, high spirit, and great personal intrepidity.

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