INTRODUCTION TO THE ORIGINAL EDITION
he following brief Memoirs of a beautiful, engaging, and, in many respects, highly gifted woman require little in the way of introduction. While we may trace some little negative disengenuousness in the writer, in regard to a due admission of her own failings, sufficient of uncoloured matter of fact remains to show the exposed situation of an unprotected beauty–or, what is worse, of a female of great personal and natural attraction, exposed to the gaze of libertine rank and fashion, under the mere nominal guardianship of a neglectful and profligate husband. Autobiography of this class is sometimes dangerous; not so that of Mrs. Robinson, who conceals not the thorns inherent in the paths along which vice externally scatters roses. For the rest, the arrangement of princely establishments in the way of amour is pleasantly portrayed in this [Page vi] brief volume, which in many respects is not without its moral. One at least is sufficiently obvious, and it will be found in the cold-hearted neglect which a woman of the most fascinating mental and personal attractions may encounter from those whose homage is merely sensual, and whose admiration is but a snare.
From The Memoirs of Mary Robinson by Mary Darby Robinson & Mary Elizabeth Robinson, with an introduction and notes by J. Fitzgerald Molloy. London: Gibbings and Company, Ld., 1895.