[continuation of a letter begun on 10th August, continued on 17th and again today, written to Anna Austen]
Thursday.— We finished it last night, after our return from drinking tea at the Gt House.– The last Chapter does not please us quite so well, we do not thoroughly like the Play; perhaps from having had too much of Plays in that way lately.– And we think you had better not leave England. Let the Portmans go to Ireland, but as you know nothing of the Manners there, you had better not go with them. You will be in danger of giving false representations. Stick to Bath & the Foresters. There you will be quite at home.–
Your Aunt C. does not like desultory novels & is rather fearful yours will be too much so, that there will be too frequent a change from one set of people to another, & that circumstances will be sometimes introduced of apparent consequence, which will lead to nothing.– It will not be so great an objection to me, if it does. I allow much more Latitude than She does– & think Nature & Spirit cover many sins of a wandering story– and People in general do not care so much about it– for your comfort. I should like to have had more of Devereux. I do not feel enough acquainted with him.– You were afraid of meddling with him I dare say.– I like your sketch of Lord Clanmurray, and your picture of the two poor young girls enjoyments is very good.– I have not yet noticed St Julian’s serious conversation with Cecilia, but I liked it exceedingly;– what he says about the madness of otherwise sensible Women, on the subject of their Daughters coming out is worth its’ weight in gold.– I do not see that the language sinks. Pray go on.
Yours very affec:ly J. Austen
[postscript below address panel]
Twice you have put Dorsetshire for Devonshire. I have altered it.– Mr Griffin must have lived in Devonshire; Dawlish is half way down the County.–
[second postscript upside down at top of p1]
These bits of Irish belong to you.– They have been in my work bag ever since You were here, & I think they may as well go to their right owner.