Leeds: James Lister for John Swale, 1742. First edition. Binding extremities rubbed, leaf E5 torn, with loss of a few letters. Contemporary bookplate of Viscount Bruce of Ampthill on verso of title. A good, sound copy. Contemporary sheep with covers and spine ruled in gilt. Twelvemo. xxviii, 190 [i.e., 191] pp. Item #15908
This is the standard account of the philanthropist Lady Elizabeth ("Betty") Hastings (1682-1739). Lady Hastings was the eldest daughter of Theophilus Hastings, seventh earl of Huntindong (1650-1701). The eighth earl gave her a generous settlement on the condition that she abandon any claim to her father's estate. With her £3,000 yearly income, she devoted her life to charitable causes, and particularly to charity schools and schools for girls. She was also a large financial donor to the Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge (SPCK) and the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel (SPG). She was commemorated in no. 42 of The Tatler as "Aspasia," a "female Philosopher," in an article likely written by family friend William Congreve, and Richard Steele sang her praises in no. 49 of The Tatler. She was the subject of a number of eighteenth-century pamphlets, most of which draw on the present work. (See Oxford DNB).