London: Printed for Longman, Hurst, Rees & Orne, 1810. First edition of a novel dealing with Regency mores. Boards a bit stained. A very good, clean copy. Contemporary black morocco over drab boards, gilt spines. Three volumes, twelvemo. , 318; vii, , 385, , [2, ads]; vii, , 422 pp. With the half-titles, and a terminal leaf of advertisements for other “Works Written by Mrs. West” in Vol. II. Item #15841
West (1758-1852) was a self-taught writer who sought to advance her family through her writings. She wrote plays and poetry, and is especially known for her novels, The Advantages of Education (1793) and A Gossip’s Story (1797), the latter of which has often been seen as a source book for Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility. Though always regarding herself first as a wife and mother, she was an advocate of education for women and was always concerned that women were often unable to develop their talents. “ Her Letters to a Young Lady (1806) has been called " an ideological counterpart to Mary Wollstonecraft's Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792), stressing the "duties of women rather than the "rights," which Wollstonecraft stressed.