Letters of Mistress Henly Published by Her Friend by Isabelle de Charriere
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Synopsis

Considered by many scholars to be among the most brilliant novels written in French during the eighteenth century, Letters of Mistress Henley Published by Her Friend was composed as a response to Samuel de Constant's misogynist novel, The Sentimental Husband (1783). Charriere presents six letters penned by a Mistress Henley, who has chosen a decent and affectionate man as her life's companion only to discover that she cannot bear sharing his life. An immediate success on its publication in 1784, Mistress Henley was greeted with acclaim and controversy: one reader called the book "literarily excellent" but "morally dangerous in various ways." Remarkable for its empathy for both spouses, Mistress Henley is not only a moving work of fiction but also one of the most modern novels of its day.
 

About Isabelle de Charriere

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ISABELLE DE CHARRIèRE, nèe Isabella Agneta Elisabeth van Tuyll van Serooskerken (1740–1805) wrote novels, essays, plays, and operas—both music and libretti.CAROLINE WARMAN is a lecturer in French at the University of Oxford and a fellow of Jesus College. This collection developed after she translated “Letters from Neuchâtel,” one of the stories included here, as a birthday present for her aunt.
 
Published November 1, 1993 by Modern Language Assn of Amer. 42 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Letters of Mistress Henly Published by Her Friend

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Gossip alternates with deep thoughts and self-revelation in this 16-year epistolary friendship of Dutch novelist Isabelle de Charriere (1740-1805), whose novels (written in French) have been compared to those of Jane Austen, and David-Louis, baron de Constant d'Hermenches (1722-1785), amateur mus...

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After a romantic mishap involving the servants, she writes, ``He is astonished that we excitable souls fall prey to each others' outbursts and exaggerations.'' His cool borders on the callous when he wonders whether her emotional nature should preclude the pregnant Mistress Henley from nursing th...

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