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Evelina traces the social development of an indifferently reared young girl who is unsure of herself and subject to errors of manners and judgment but eventually overcomes her deficiencies and manages to marry.
Innovative in its coolly detached treatment of contemporary manners and its use of the erring and uncertain conduct of the heroine for its plot development, Evelina pointed the way for the novels of Jane Austen. Info Print Cite. Submit Feedback. Thank you for your feedback. See Article History. Britannica Quiz. Who was the author of The Grapes of Wrath? Learn More in these related Britannica articles:. Written in letters, it charts the fortunes and misfortunes of an ingenuous heroine encountering the delights and dangers of Georgian London for the first time.
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Evelina Study Guide
London: T. Lowndes, Reprinted New York: W. I will not, however, with the futility of apologies, intrude upon your time, but briefly acknowledge the motives of my temerity; lest, by a premature exercise of that patience which I hope will befriend me, I should lessen its benevolence, and be accessary to my own condemnation. Without name, without recommendation, and unknown alike to success and disgrace, to whom can I so properly apply for patronage, as to those who publicly profess themselves Inspectors of all literary performances? The extensive plan of your critical observations, — which, not confined to works of utility or ingenuity, is equally open to those of frivolous amusement, — and, yet worse than frivolous, dullness, — encourages me to seek for your protection, since, — perhaps for my sins! To resent, therefore, this offering, however insignificant, would ill become the universality of your undertaking; though not to despise it may, alas!
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Although published anonymously, its authorship was revealed by the poet George Huddesford in what Burney called a "vile poem". In this 3-volume epistolary novel , title character Evelina is the unacknowledged but legitimate daughter of a dissipated English aristocrat, thus raised in rural seclusion until her 17th year. Through a series of humorous events that take place in London and the resort town of Hotwells , near Bristol , Evelina learns to navigate the complex layers of 18th-century society and come under the eye of a distinguished nobleman with whom a romantic relationship is formed in the latter part of the novel. This sentimental novel , which has notions of sensibility and early romanticism , satirizes the society in which it is set and is a significant precursor to the work of Jane Austen and Maria Edgeworth , whose novels explore many of the same issues. The novel opens with a distressed letter from Lady Howard to her longtime acquaintance, the Reverend Arthur Villars, in which she reports that Mme Madame Duval, the grandmother of Villars' ward , Evelina Anville, intends to visit England to renew her acquaintance with her granddaughter Evelina.
Evelina traces the social development of an indifferently reared young girl who is unsure of herself and subject to errors of manners and judgment but eventually overcomes her deficiencies and manages to marry. Innovative in its coolly detached treatment of contemporary manners and its use of the erring and uncertain conduct of the heroine for its plot development, Evelina pointed the way for the novels of Jane Austen. Info Print Cite. Submit Feedback. Thank you for your feedback.