Maria Edgeworth: Tales of Fashionable Life

(893 words)
  • Sharon Jude Murphy (St. Patrick's College, Drumcondra)

The two series of Tales of Fashionable Life (1809-12) are representative of the most ambitious project of Maria Edgeworth's literary career, and one which was underway from as early as 1802 when she first began to sketch “Almeria”. In his preface to the 1809 series of the tales, Richard Lovell Edgeworth declared that it was his daughter's aim “to promote, by all her writings, the progress of education, from the cradle to the grave”, and that the present and envisaged volumes of the series were “intended to point out some of those errors, to which the higher classes of society are disposed” (1: iii-iv). The seriousness with which his daughter viewed this project, he remarked, was to be discerned from “The dates …

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Murphy, Sharon Jude. "Tales of Fashionable Life". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 31 May 2007
[, accessed 27 September 2016.]