the_comfortable_courtesan: image of a fan c. 1810 (Default)
[personal profile] the_comfortable_courtesan

[After a couple of blank pages in the final volume of the memoirs so far discovered, there is this entry, written in a somewhat shaky hand that nonetheless resembles that of the foregoing.]

Hannah came to me t’other day to say that Beatrice had been turning out the attics, and had come across two stout chests, firmly lockt, right at the back. Did I know anything about 'em, or had they been left mayhap by the U-s, those excellent people.

La, says I, had almost forgot those chests, that I askt the dear good U-s to store for me in the attics, a deal of years ago.

For now 'tis brought to mind, I collect that was a time that tho’ 'twould have been prudent, I could not bring myself to destroy these memoirs utterly, and yet 'twas an immense concern to me that might fall into the wrong hands, and contain’d a deal of secrets that were not my own. And tho’ I had endeavour’d conceal the identity of my friends and acquaintances, yet upon reflection I fear’d I was most unsubtle in the matter and anyone with some knowledge of Society and the demimonde could have readyly seen thro’ my devices. (O that I had had the dear Contessa’s ability with cyphers, that she could quite dash off as I might scribble a note.)

So I had another chest made of the same dimensions as the one I had already provid’d myself with, and laid at the bottom of each some several volumes of these memoirs, and then plac’d on top of 'em the books in which I had made the first essays at my novels and plays and tales, in hopes that did any come across 'em, would look into one or two and see ‘twas Gothick matters of ghosts and curses and witchcraft, and while I had rather not have had authorship prov’d upon me, 'twas a revelation I could bear did it come.

And then I wrote to the U-s saying that I would be most immense gratefull might I send some matters out of my Town house to be stor’d at the place in Surrey, would they not be in their way. They wrote back to say I was entire welcome to do so, and so I sent the chests and some other matters into Surrey, and made myself renounce the habit of writing up these journals.

But, o, how agreeable it has been to look thro’ 'em, even if has also made me extreme tearfull when I read of the happy times I had with my dearest loves, and the fine conversations I had with dear Sandy, for tho’ I have friends and acquaintance enough, there are few indeed of my own generation left and sure I become some historickal relick, that young people come and view as a piece of antiquity in a cabinet of curiosities.

Indeed, the young people are not so young, and my belov’d tiny perfect baby Flora is a fine woman of middle years that has a little grey come to her hair.

I was a little mind’d to say these volumes must be burnt, but then I mind upon what Flora and Hannah will discourse of, that too much of history is the tale of men writ by men from such records as men have left behind, and that, mayhap, the writings of a silly creature about herself and her circle may have some interest to some historian in future time. Have I not heard young fellows talk of our set as tho’ there were no women among 'em, when Susannah and Viola were its bright shining lights, and their opinions consider'd of great weight? Do I but show posterity to the contrary, 'tis somewhat.

So I will put 'em back in the trunk, and have 'em sprinkl’d with Phoebe's fine powder against insects, and put in a good dry part of the attic, where they may be safe. I daresay is much in 'em would shock the present time, but may come around again some day when manners are freer once more, like unto the Restoration after the Commonwealth.

Date: 2017-05-19 08:39 am (UTC)
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
From: [personal profile] rmc28
Awwww. Somehow I imagine Sandy giving a Calvinistic glare at "historickal relic". (Though how lovely to see Flora and Hannah still close!)

Date: 2017-05-19 08:56 am (UTC)
questioncurl: hollow sculpture of words (Default)
From: [personal profile] questioncurl
I feel a suspicious dampness about the eyes as this volume draws to a close, tho' I am like to go right back to the beginning and read 'em through!

Date: 2017-05-19 09:58 am (UTC)
threeringedmoon: (Default)
From: [personal profile] threeringedmoon
Thank you.

Date: 2017-05-19 10:54 am (UTC)
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
From: [personal profile] kate_nepveu
Flora and Hannah, no longer infant bluestockings! And so correct that "too much of history is the tale of men writ by men from such records as men have left behind."

Thank you so much!

Date: 2017-05-19 11:09 am (UTC)
lilliburlero: (oh sandy)
From: [personal profile] lilliburlero
Very glad of Flora and Hannah's influence in preserving the memoir! And, of course, Phoebe's fine powder.

So sorry to be saying farewell (if it is indeed?) to Lady B-, but my heartfelt gratitude to the amanuensis for the many months of pleasure!

Date: 2017-05-19 11:19 am (UTC)
contrary_cal: (Default)
From: [personal profile] contrary_cal
Aw. Sniffling. Thank you!

Date: 2017-05-19 12:31 pm (UTC)
sharpiefan: Felicity Jones as Catherine Morland, writing a letter (Emma Vickery)
From: [personal profile] sharpiefan
I am very much going to miss the news of Lady B- and her circle - thank you for the months of pleasure which these memoirs have afforded! I shall now have to go read 'em over from the very beginning, I think.

Date: 2017-05-19 05:08 pm (UTC)
tree_and_leaf: Isolated tree in leaf, against blue sky. (Default)
From: [personal profile] tree_and_leaf
I shall miss Lady B and her circle very much. Thank you.

Date: 2017-05-19 05:22 pm (UTC)
nenya_kanadka: Facebook status: OT3 with the F-s (Comfortable Courtesan facebook)
From: [personal profile] nenya_kanadka
What is this curious prickling of the eyes, this lump in the chest, this small smile upon my lips?

There's so much love in this project as a whole, both among the characters and in the way we are drawn into the lives of people from two centuries past (or their fictional counterparts). It's important, what Hannah and Flora said. ❤

(In more selfish news, I'm so pleased that my own name appears in these tales as one with a fine apprehension of matters. Makes me smile.)

An excellent place to leave this volume...despite my many many questions about what happened in the intervening 30, 40 years!

...dammit, there I go choking up again.

Date: 2017-05-19 06:24 pm (UTC)
white_hart: (Default)
From: [personal profile] white_hart
*sniffle* I am really going to miss Lady B's updates.

Date: 2017-05-19 06:44 pm (UTC)
sally_maria: (Doctor 12 and Bill)
From: [personal profile] sally_maria
Another reader who's going to miss your wonderful creations, but thank you very much for the care and affection you've put into building this world.

Date: 2017-05-19 07:17 pm (UTC)
syderia: lotus Syderia (Default)
From: [personal profile] syderia
Thank you for sharing their lives with us.

Date: 2017-05-19 09:02 pm (UTC)
eeyorerin: (absorbed penguin)
From: [personal profile] eeyorerin
Thank you.

Date: 2017-05-19 09:09 pm (UTC)
commodorified: (nothing like the sun)
From: [personal profile] commodorified
Indeed I find myself a little tearful. Clorinda and co have helped me through some very difficult days, and I shall always be grateful to them and their revered amaneusis.

Date: 2017-05-19 11:06 pm (UTC)
loligo: Scully with blue glasses (Default)
From: [personal profile] loligo
This project brought me so much happiness on a regular basis -- I will always be grateful for this wonderful adventure with Lady B- and friends.

Date: 2017-05-20 12:02 am (UTC)
kathmandu: Close-up of pussywillow catkins. (Default)
From: [personal profile] kathmandu
Awwwwwwww.

Thank you for tying it off with a bow.

Date: 2017-05-20 12:38 am (UTC)
rymenhild: Manuscript page from British Library MS Harley 913 (Default)
From: [personal profile] rymenhild
Clorinda and her friends were such delightful company over the last years. Thank you for bringing us to Clorinda's world.

Date: 2017-05-20 01:55 am (UTC)
snippy: Lego me holding book (Default)
From: [personal profile] snippy
Can't express all my gratitude, but hope that the knowledge that many days I looked forward all day to reading your posts that evening as the one bright spot in a difficult time of my life makes a start. This enterprise has been entirely wonderful.

Date: 2017-05-20 02:09 am (UTC)
castiron: cartoony sketch of owl (Default)
From: [personal profile] castiron
A lovely coda. **applause**

Date: 2017-05-20 02:15 am (UTC)
em_h: (Default)
From: [personal profile] em_h
Like others, I have to express my gratitude to Madame C/Lady B for sustaining me through some difficult times. Reading her journals while drinking my coffee has become my morning ritual, and my days will start a bit more sadly without her. Thank you so much for all this time with her.

Date: 2017-05-20 10:37 am (UTC)
tamarillow: picture of owl in coffee beans and cups, text 'night owls run on coffee' (nightowl)
From: [personal profile] tamarillow
Thank you for all of these glorious journals.

I will miss the more or less daily installment, but thank you for keeping it up for so long.

Date: 2017-05-20 10:48 am (UTC)
ankaret: (Where)
From: [personal profile] ankaret
Thank you. I would say more but I cannot words at present.

Date: 2017-05-20 01:00 pm (UTC)
azara: (Default)
From: [personal profile] azara
Thank you so much - reading these volumes has always lifted my spirits and I will miss them.

Date: 2017-05-20 09:13 pm (UTC)
annotated_em: close shot of a purple crocus (Default)
From: [personal profile] annotated_em
I shall miss these updates, since they always made for a delightful start to the day. Thank you for sharing them with us.

Date: 2017-05-21 11:44 am (UTC)
adeliej: a flower formed from fire (Default)
From: [personal profile] adeliej
Thank you for all your writing, and thank you for ending it in such a lovely fashion!

Date: 2017-05-21 03:00 pm (UTC)
fred_mouse: cross stitched image reading "do not feed the data scientists" (Default)
From: [personal profile] fred_mouse
Reading these entries has been a wonderful experience. Thank you for everything!

Date: 2017-05-21 07:25 pm (UTC)
el_staplador: Actress Mary Anne Keeley in a breeches role (breeches)
From: [personal profile] el_staplador
Thank you for all of it.

Date: 2017-05-24 02:40 pm (UTC)
violsva: full bookshelf with ladder (Default)
From: [personal profile] violsva
Thank you for everything.

These works have been a bulwark in times of stress. I was saving these last few, and to the last they have provided brilliant distraction and comfort.

Also, I am enormously impressed by the amount of work you have put into them, and their consistent excellence.
Edited Date: 2017-05-24 02:40 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-05-30 04:15 pm (UTC)
brigdh: (Default)
From: [personal profile] brigdh
Awww. What a perfect ending, if ending it is. Thank you again for these memories; they have cheered my days so much.
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