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Lot 31
BURNEY, FANNY (1752-1840, novelist, married name Fanny D'Arblay)
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Lot Details
BURNEY, FANNY (1752-1840, novelist, married name Fanny D'Arblay)


  • Fanny Burney was very close to her family and her sense of grief at her brother Charles's death from a stroke four months after writing this letter and her husband's death five months later made her inconsolable. Her son Alexander was to pre-decease her in 1837.

    It was at Ilfracombe that Fanny, aged 65, had a terrifying experience of being cut off by the tide when she was exploring a cave which she wrote up in 1823 as 'Adventures at Ilfracombe'. Here too she began the project of working on her father's papers. The letter is published in Letters and Journals, X, 1982, pp. 641-646.

    Charles Burney (1757–1817), Fanny's brother, despite a disastrous start as a book thief at Cambridge, became a schoolmaster, an acclaimed Greek and Latin scholar and book collector. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society, Professor of Ancient Literature at the Royal Academy and a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries. Like his father a monument was erected to him in Westminster Abbey. In 1818 the House of Commons granted £13,500 to the trustees of the British Museum to purchase his library.
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