First published in 1749 and reissued here in its 1765 printing, this novel by Sarah Fielding (1710-68) attempts to encourage young women to lives of virtue and benevolence through the story of nine girls living with their governess, Mrs Teachum, in a school in the north of England. The girls, aged between eleven and fourteen years old, learn the feminine graces and manners from various lessons and field trips organised by their teacher, as well as through the tales they tell each other. Skilled in conveying moral messages in this educational context, Fielding, whose brother was the novelist Henry Fielding, had also published anonymously The Adventures of David Simple (1744). The present work is particularly notable for being the first novel written in English expressly for children. An important text in eighteenth-century literature, it will appeal especially to readers interested in the history of women's education.
Cambridge University Press
Series & Set Details
Cambridge Library Collection - Education
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