— But you will be ready to say, what was your hope in doing this? — What did you look forward to? — To any thing, every thing — to time, chance, circumstances, slow effects, sudden bursts, perserverance and weariness ... Every possibility of good was before me, and the first of blessings secured ... — from Emma, by Jane Austen (1775-1817)
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

August 11, 2010

Edith Wharton (1862-1937)


The last days were serene ones. The loveliest of St. Brice summers drifted by, and Edith drifted with the days, gazing out at the garden from the chaise longue or moving slowly about it in the wheelchair, dozing, remembering, planning small bequests. On August 4, she wrote a line to Matilda Gay at Le Breau:  I am just sending you this line by Elisina,  to tell you how sorry I am not to be able to go with her to see you this afternoon. I should have been quite willing to go, but Elisina and my maid behaved so awfully about it that I had no alternative but to go on dozing on the sofa.'
It was a last little flash of the old spirit, but the handwriting was tremulous and ran all over the page. Edith Wharton died a week later, just before six on the evening of Wednesday, August 11.

-- R.W.B. Lewis, Edith Wharton:  A Biography

3 comments:

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

Oh, my...is it because I am reading The House of Mirth right now that the passage you selected to remind us of her passing is today and is so beautifully written? Wonderful selection, and thanks for reminding us all --Edith Wharton is a wonderful writer and I'm so in love with what I'm reading now.

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

I meant to add that it is because I am reading The House of Mirth that the passage you selected made me tear up, sorry for the typo! :|

Joan Hunter Dunn said...

It's always interesting to know about people's deaths - when and a little bit about it. So thank you for Edith's. Hope that doesn't sound morbid.

Thank you for visiting!

Card Catalog

#6barsets #emma200th #maisie #PalliserParty #Woolfalong A.A. Milne Agatha Christie Alexander McCall Smith Amy Lowell Angela Thirkell Ann Bridge Anne Perry Anthony Trollope Anticipation Armchair Travels Art Audiobooks Barbara Pym Biography Bloomsbury Bookish things Boston British Library Crime Classics Cambridge Cathleen Schine Charles Dickens Coffee-table books Cookbooks D.E. Stevenson Deborah Crombie Donna Leon Dorothy L. Sayers E.H. Young E.M. Forster Edith Wharton Elinor Lipman Elizabeth Gaskell Elizabeth Jenkins Elizabeth Taylor Elizabeth von Arnim Emily Dickinson Ernest Hemingway Eudora Welty Fiction Films Food from Books Food Writing Found on a Blog George Eliot Georgette Heyer Helen Ashton Henry James History Homes and Haunts Ideas Imogen Robertson Isabella Stewart Gardner Jacqueline Winspear Jane Austen Joanna Trollope Julia Child Language Laurie Colwin Letters Library Books Literature Louise Andrews Kent Louise Penny M.F.K. Fisher Madame Bovary Madame de Sévigné Madame de Staël Margaret Kennedy Margery Sharp Mary Shelley Memoirs Miss Read My Year with Edith Mysteries Nathaniel Hawthorne Nonfiction Nook Only Connect P.D. James Paris in July Persephones Plays Poetry Pride and Prejudice 200 Queen Victoria R.I.P. Reading England 2015 Ruth Rendell Sarah Orne Jewett Short Stories Switzerland Sylvia Beach Team Middlemarch The 1924 Club The Brontës the Carlyles The Classics Club Thomas Hardy Virago Virginia Woolf Washington Irving Willa Cather William Maxwell Winifred Peck Winifred Watson