Hard Cover. London: J. Johnson, 1806. First Edition. Very Good.
First edition. Two volumes. Bound in contemporary quarter brown calf over marbled boards, spines lettered and decorated in gilt. Some wear and rubbing, spine ends chipped at corners, front hinges repaired, former owner bookplates to front pastedowns, some minor spotting, else very good. Leonora, much like Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, is a commentary on the concept of sensibility, defined in the Romantic Period as appropriate emotional expression in concordance with high morals. The plot tells of a recently married Englishwoman named Leonora and her coquettish friend Olivia. Olivia, who had been forced to leave England as a result of her controversial behavior, is a self-proclaimed sensible woman who at first seems to behave in a socially acceptable manner. Her actions, however, culminate in the seduction of Leonora's husband, demonstrating her very lack of sensibility. Edgeworth, an Irish writer, critiques the English ideal that visible behavior cannot be affected by unseen persuasions.