Innocent Visits of Elizabeth Ridicule Immorality

The Visits of Elizabeth by Elinor Glyn consists of a series of letters written by a 17-year-old girl to her invalid mother while visiting relatives who are obliged by family ties to see that Elizabeth meets eligible men.

Elizabeth is a pretty, vivacious, and principled debutant. Her  keen powers of observation and highly developed sense of the ridiculous get plenty of exercise among her aristocratic relatives and their not-so-aristocratic hangers-on. Elizabeth  regularly misunderstands the significance of what relates. Readers less innocent than Elizabeth will see what she doesn’t.

Elizabeth’s relatives and their cronies may not rate high on morals, but the family knows too well the importance of unblemished reputation if a girl is to make a good match for them to let the girl’s naïveté to get her into serious trouble.

The Visits of Elizabeth bubbles with fun and laugh-out-loud lines for those who know French and enough about 19th century European society to grasp the allusions Elizabeth misses.   Many contemporary readers, however, will miss a great deal of the plot and the most of the pleasure of this novel.

Project Gutenberg

The Visits of Elizabeth
By Elinor Glyn
1901 Bestseller 6
Project Gutenberg e-book #10959

©Linda Gorton Aragoni
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