In Defence of Harriet Shelley

By Mark Twain

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...IN DEFENSE OF HARRIET SHELLEY

by Mark Twain




I

I have committed sins, of course; but I have...

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...artful effects out of, shiny new
stovepipe hat to assist in his courtly bows; and the...

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...so its drifting mind settles
upon it with that intent, but always with one and the...

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...annoying, irritating, and
oppressive. It takes one some little time to find out that phrases which
seem...

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...love, for he was just getting over a passion for his cousin, Harriet
Grove, and just...

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...birds in a nest. Harriet sang evenings or
read aloud; also she studied and tried to...

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...ties dissolve,
But ours shall not...

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...to Bracknell, July 27th (this is still 1813) purposely to
be near this unwholesome prairie-dogs' nest....

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...be coldly ungrateful who could consent
to count and consider little spots and flaws in such...

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...deserved it in her "later years," when she had for generations
ceased to be sentimental and...

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...And because, also--may we
conjecture this?--we may hope for the privilege of taking up our cozy
Latin...

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...with him. We are
left destitute of conjectures at this point by the biographer, and it
is...

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...August and September, and four days of July. That is to
say, he has had opportunity...

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... making a trial of them with us--"

A trial of...

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... seeking a house close to us--"

Ah! he is not close enough yet, it...

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..........
"Eliza is still with us--not...

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...that I am not an inmate of this delightful home--that a time
...

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...come to feel about her now would make us think she was
the person who had...

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...words had "stirred poison there."

He was ashamed of himself, his conscience was upbraiding him. He...

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...did, was it a heavy offense? Was it unique?
Other young wives had committed it before,...

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...his studying in that
person's society. We feel at liberty to rule out Count No. 2...

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...him to strike this blow
at the mother-heart of this friendless girl. The biographer says, "We
may...

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...the
details. His insidious literature is like blue water; you know what it
is that makes it...

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...or in favor of anybody, pleads for
nobody, accuses nobody. Taken detail by detail, it is...

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...1. Harriet sets up carriage. 1. CORNELIA TURNER.
...

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...kept a diary, the approaching
Mary Godwin kept a diary, her father kept one, her half-sister...

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... no one can wish to heap blame on any buried head'--"

So it...

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..."I was in love with Cornelia all that time; my
wife kept crying and worrying about...

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...which is more than two months old; besides, she was
probably more intent upon the central...

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...beauteous half went to
town on Thursday."

Then Shelley writes a poem--a chant of grief over the...

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...as "evidence," and they make much confusion. As
soon as one of them has proved one...

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...love."

This is in May--apparently towards the end of it. Harriet and Shelley
were corresponding all the...

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...have been as gray as her mother's when the
services were over.

Hogg went to the Godwin...

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...was an
advanced thinker and an able writer. One of his romances is still read,
but his...

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...by a former marriage. She was very
young and pretty and accommodating, and always ready to...

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... their words about Mary's mother, and...

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...get
reconciled to it and stop fretting about it.

After Shelley's (conjectured) visit to Harriet at Bath--8th...

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...poet's plunge into an adoring passion for Mary Godwin
that if it had been a check...

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...days
earlier, he forgot to write Harriet; forgot it the next day and the
next. During four...

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...emanations of a pure and truthful nature," we should hold
this to be a truthful letter,...

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...evil gossip, that comes from a source
that entitles it to a hearing.

On the credit side...

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...was so pressed for money to support
his mistress with that he went to his wife...