1806 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu

William Lisle Bowles, Note to Prologue to the Satires; Works of Pope, ed. Bowles (1806) 7:4.



It has been observed, that in the article of Letter-writing, the English have few so good writers as the French. There certainly are not such copious "collections" in the English language.

Lady Montague's, which have been collected and published since Warton's observations, are eminently interesting, owing to the ease of the style; the delicate and humorous touches of character; the lively tone of description, where it is incidentally used; and, above all, the interest excited by seeing, as it were before our eyes, the picture of vivacity, youth, beauty, and fashion, fading into age; in accompanying the same person through the vicissitudes of life, and partaking in her feelings, as a mother and grandmother, whom we had admired in the splendour of youth, station, talents, and beauty.