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Since Fontenelle's day women have begun to show what they could do personally in the way of literary style, besides acting through men. With George Sand and George Eliot to represent their sex, it is clear that woman's contribution is now direct as well as indirect. With the advance of higher education and the incentive of magazine opportunities, we may gradually expect results such as these two fine writers only prefigure. When we consider how rare in printed literature are the qualities we often find in women's letters — the wit, the grace, the daring, the incisiveness, the “lyric glimpses” --it is certain that there is more to come hereafter from that direction. The elaborate descriptions of nature or society in the literary man's book are often not half so good as the dashing delineations of the same thing in his wife's correspondence, from which he perhaps drew his materials. I still remember with a fraternal pride which was, I fear, a substitute for all shame, that the one passage which was applauded in my Commencement oration on leaving Harvard College was contributed by my elder sister. Perhaps if all college boys made similar confessions, we should get some additional light as to the influence of women on style.

Nor is it altogether a disadvantage to literature, I suspect, that women have been kept out of academic education while it was narrow and pedantic,

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