Art. 36. - The Modern Griselda: a Tale. By Miss Edgeworth. 8vo. 5s. Johnson. 1805.
The deserved éclat which miss Edgeworth acquired by 'Castle Rackrent,' was the only motive which induced us to venture on the perusal of the present performance; but we cannot say that it afforded us much entertainment.
'The Modern Griselda,' unlike her namesake of antiquity, is, in the strictest sense of the word, a shrew, who is determined to rule her husband with absolute authority: poor Benedick, out of pure love, at first submits to her unaccountable caprices; but at length, wearied and disgusted, exerts the prerogatives of a husband: she faints; he begs pardon; she returns to her old ways; he grows sullen and indifferent; she, unable to bear this, requests a separation, which is granted by him; - thus ends 'the Modern Griselda.' It reminded us, mutatis mutandis, of the lines in Gay:
They squabble for a pin, a feather,
And wonder how they came together.
The husband's sullen, dogged, shy,
The wife grows flippant in reply:
He loves command and due restriction:
And she as well likes contradiction;
She'll have her will, or have her fits.
 He this way tugs, she t'other draws,
The man grows jealous, and with cause:
Nothing can save him but divorce;
And here the wife complies of course.
The quotations in page 162, from the 'Oeuvres Philosophiques' of M. de St. Lambert, are very beautiful. [complete]
Provided by Julie A. Shaffer, November 1999