as to produce little effect after much labor.”
Yet in the opinion of Sir Walter Scott
and all succeeding critics, the result was quite worth the effort, Scott
saying that he himself did the “big bow-wow style as well as anybody,” but that all the minuter excellences were peculiarly her province.
As a result, she has far surpassed in fame her immediate contemporaries of her own sex. Madame D'Arblay
), Miss Porter
, Mrs. Opic
, and even Miss Edgeworth
, are now little read, while Miss Austen
's novels seem as if they were written yesterday.
But the curious thing is that of the leading novelists in the English
tongue to-day it is the men, not the women, who have taken up Miss Austen
's work, while the women show more inclination, if not to the “big bow-wow style” of Scott
, at least to the novel of plot and narrative.
among the lately dead, James
among the living, are the lineal successors of Miss Austen
Perhaps it is an old-fashioned taste which leads me to think that neither of these does his work quite so well as she ; but they all belong to the same photographic school; each sets up his apparatus and takes what my little nephew called a “flannelly group” of a household, or a few households, leaving the great world of adventure untouched.
But what plots and enterprises we obtain in these days, on the other hand, from women novelists-ranging