Frances Burney

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I cannot be much pleased without an appearance of truth; at least of possibility...

Frances Burney (13 June 17526 January 1840), also known as Fanny Burney and after marriage as Madame d'Arblay, was an English novelist, poet, diarist, and playwright.

Sourced[edit]

Letters[edit]

  • To have some account of my thoughts, manners, acquaintance and actions, when the hour arrives in which time is more nimble than memory, is the reason which induces me to keep a journal: a journal in which I must confess my every thought, must open my whole heart!
    • The Early Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney, vol. 1, p. 1, journal entry, March 27, 1768.
  • I cannot be much pleased without an appearance of truth; at least of possibility — I wish the history to be natural though the sentiments are refined; and the characters to be probable, though their behaviour is excelling.
    • The Early Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney, vol. 1, p. 8, journal entry, 1768.
  • Look at your [English] ladies of quality—are they not forever parting with their husbands—forfeiting their reputations—and is their life aught but dissipation? In common genteel life, indeed, you may now and then meet with very fine girls—who have politeness, sense and conversation—but these are few—and then look at your trademen's daughters—what are they?—poor creatures indeed! all pertness, imitation and folly.
    • The Early Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney, vol. 1, p. 47, journal entry, November 17, 1768.
  • When once—which every body must be—you are convinced of the wickedness and deceit of men, it is impossible to preserve untainted your own innocence of heart. Experience will prove the depravity of mankind, and the conviction of it only serves to create distrust, suspicion—caution—and sometimes causelessly.
    • The Early Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney, vol. 1, pp. 47-48, journal entry, November 17, 1768.

Books[edit]

  • it has been long and justly remarked, that folly has ever sought alliance with beauty.
  • I looked about for some of my acquaintance, but in vain, for I saw not one person that I knew, which is very odd, for all the world seemed there.
    • Evelina (1778)
  • A private ball this was called...but Lord! my dear Sir, I believe I saw half the world!
    • Evelina (1778)
  • he said, 'Madam—may I presume?'—and stopped, offering to take my hand. I...could scarce forbear laughing. 'Allow me, Madam,' continuing he, affectedly breaking off every half moment, 'the honour and happiness...the happiness and honor...'
    • Evelina (1778)
  • Tired, ashamed, and mortified, I begged to sit down till we returned home, which I did soon after. Lord Orville did me the honour to hand me to the coach, talking all the way of the honour I had done him! O these fashionable people!
    • Evelina (1778)
  • 'No, Madam,' cried I, '—only—only I did not know that gentleman,—and so,—and so I thought—I intended—I—'
    Overpowered by all that had passed, I had not strength to make my mortifying explanation; — my spirits quite failed me, and I burst into tears.
    • Evelina (1778)
  • I am too inexperienced and ignorant to conduct myself with propriety in this town, where every thing is new to me, and many things are unaccountable and perplexing.
    • Evelina (1778)

External links[edit]

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