Stephanie Mesler
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Letter From Fanny Burney To Lorsagne de Sade


By Stephanie Mesler, 2014-10-06

6 October 1794

Rome, Italy

Dearest of all friends, Lorsagne,

It is not yet light as I write this farewell. I am told my ship, The Isabella, will set sail just after dawn. I know you expect me to return to Rocca Sorrentina after some time with Father, but I find that is not to be. It is not just the disappointing news you recently shared that night when friends gathered in my villa rooms. That report might turn me from all Frenchmen for the remainder of my lifetime, but would not likely send me flying from Italy. Father suggests that once his business is completed in Rome, it will be time we return to England. He tells me Dr. Johnson is not well and that, his long-time hostess and friend has left him to fend for himself at the last. I am quite certain there are many others who will happily tend and comfort the dear man in his darkening hours. I want to be one of them.

I fear it will be some time before we meet again face to face, my friend. As always, you will be in my heart and on my mind. And, of course, there will be letters. Lots and lots of letters. I recall that you plan to return to France in the near future. Perhaps some business (or pelasure?) will one day bring you to London. There, I hope you will call on me, your most adoring friend and confidante,

Fanny

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Letter From Fanny Burney To Lorsagne de Sade


By Stephanie Mesler, 2014-10-06

6 October 1794

Rome, Italy

Dearest of all friends, Lorsagne,

It is not yet light as I write this farewell. I am told my ship, The Isabella, will set sail just after dawn. I know you expect me to return to Rocca Sorrentina after some time with Father, but I find that is not to be. It is not just the disappointing news you recently shared that night when friends gathered in my villa rooms. That report might turn me from all Frenchmen for the remainder of my lifetime, but would not likely send me flying from Italy. Father suggests that once his business is completed in Rome, it will be time we return to England. He tells me Dr. Johnson is not well and that, his long-time hostess and friend has left him to fend for himself at the last. I am quite certain there are many others who will happily tend and comfort the dear man in his darkening hours. I want to be one of them.

I fear it will be some time before we meet again face to face, my friend. As always, you will be in my heart and on my mind. And, of course, there will be letters. Lots and lots of letters. I recall that you plan to return to France in the near future. Perhaps some business (or pelasure?) will one day bring you to London. There, I hope you will call on me, your most adoring friend and confidante,

Fanny

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962_blogs.jpg?width=3001784, 27 September

Dearest Father, Composer of My Very Being and Arbiter of My most Consequential Choices,

I write first and foremost to congratulate you, Father! No daughter of any great man could be more proud than I am to hear of your recent commission in Rome. Music for Holy Week at the Papal Chapel! Could any musician hope for a greater honor? You must feel that you have, at last, achieved one of your life's greatest purposes.

Of course, I will join you in Rome! How could I refuse to be at my fathers' side under such grand circumstances? Perhaps you will be in Italy long enough to return to Rocca Sorrentina with me for just a brief retreat? I can guarantee, Father, the sea air and subtle, warm winds are quite restorative. I have had not even a sniffle in all the months I have been in residence here and feel myself in greater vigor than ever before. I am sure a visit would benefit my most excellent father.

As to your other question, about M. Lt. Badeau -- I have indeed heard from him since you and I saw him together in Marseilles. He wrote not too long ago about his travels, saying that he is called to further service by his King. Unfortunately, I do not know when I will hear directly from him again, as his duties are of a somewhat secret nature and require some great amount of discretion on his part. I have heard from a friend of my dear friend, Lorsagne DeSade -- Yes, Father I am aware of your feelings about that friendship and assure you an association with Lorsagne is not an association with her infamous father, now incarcerated in the Bastile. -- Lorsagne's friend, another French soldier, by the nameLucien de Robion-Castellane, was here in Italy not long ago. He told me then that Lorsagne has news of Henri. I do hope to hear from her soon. Even better, I hope she returns soon from her own travels so that she can share her news face to face.

Father, I have begun writing that play we discussed in France. It is coming along and I think you will enjoy the comedy. It will be ready for Mr. Sheridan quite soon. And, tell me, please, how is your dear wife, my dear step-mother? Susan writes that she has been unwell. I hope she has by now recovered, thereby restoring serenity to house and home.

I will post this note on the next ship to leave port. I look forward to seeing you next month in Rome!

Your Most Devoted Daughter,

Fanny

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962_blogs.jpg?width=3001784, 27 September

Dearest Father, Composer of My Very Being and Arbiter of My most Consequential Choices,

I write first and foremost to congratulate you, Father! No daughter of any great man could be more proud than I am to hear of your recent commission in Rome. Music for Holy Week at the Papal Chapel! Could any musician hope for a greater honor? You must feel that you have, at last, achieved one of your life's greatest purposes.

Of course, I will join you in Rome! How could I refuse to be at my fathers' side under such grand circumstances? Perhaps you will be in Italy long enough to return to Rocca Sorrentina with me for just a brief retreat? I can guarantee, Father, the sea air and subtle, warm winds are quite restorative. I have had not even a sniffle in all the months I have been in residence here and feel myself in greater vigor than ever before. I am sure a visit would benefit my most excellent father.

As to your other question, about M. Lt. Badeau -- I have indeed heard from him since you and I saw him together in Marseilles. He wrote not too long ago about his travels, saying that he is called to further service by his King. Unfortunately, I do not know when I will hear directly from him again, as his duties are of a somewhat secret nature and require some great amount of discretion on his part. I have heard from a friend of my dear friend, Lorsagne DeSade -- Yes, Father I am aware of your feelings about that friendship and assure you an association with Lorsagne is not an association with her infamous father, now incarcerated in the Bastile. -- Lorsagne's friend, another French soldier, by the nameLucien de Robion-Castellane, was here in Italy not long ago. He told me then that Lorsagne has news of Henri. I do hope to hear from her soon. Even better, I hope she returns soon from her own travels so that she can share her news face to face.

Father, I have begun writing that play we discussed in France. It is coming along and I think you will enjoy the comedy. It will be ready for Mr. Sheridan quite soon. And, tell me, please, how is your dear wife, my dear step-mother? Susan writes that she has been unwell. I hope she has by now recovered, thereby restoring serenity to house and home.

I will post this note on the next ship to leave port. I look forward to seeing you next month in Rome!

Your Most Devoted Daughter,

Fanny

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The Virtual Diary of Fanny Burney In Italy


By Stephanie Mesler, 2014-09-12

1784, 12 September

Dearest Whomever, I find myself once again turning to these pages for solace and guidance when none is forthcoming elsewhere. I grow more restless as the summer turns to Fall, knowing that I must soon make a decision regarding my winter time accommodations. I could stay right where I am, in Italy, quietly content among the people of this lovely Island. It is certainly true that it is inexpensive living here. Also true that saving money while I complete the drama is an absolute goal. My heart's desire is, of course, to return home to Father, family, and most perfect England in time for Yule. But, there, my presence would certainly be a financial strain on Father, who does not need any further strain, already being encumbered by The Grande Dame, my dearest second mother. I should hate to be the cause of further stress for my father. And, if I am to be completely honest -- and why shouldn't I be in the unseen pages of this diary? -- I do desire something even more than to spend the winter with family and friends at home. My heart's greatest desire is to spend Christmas in the company of a certain French soldier.

I have finally received word from him. He tells me that he would like nothing more than to board the next boat south from Marseilles but finds himself pressed into further service for his King. Henri has written, "The King himself has asked for me. How can one refuse such an invitation to serve at the will of Louis?"

I would like to be impressed by this-- how many men can say they have been called by name to royal service? And of course, I am impressed-- it's just that impressed and happy are not the same thing. I would be happier if the French King were to shine his radiant favor elsewhere for just a few months. I don't mean to keep the good Lieutenant from his duties forever, of course, but it would be nice if he were free just long enough for us get to know one another a little better. Henri alludes to his plans for the future and seems to imply that these plans include "my little English novelist," as he calls me. Is it silly that my heart flutters as I write these words? His little novelist. I have been called a novelist before, and many names far less flattering as well. Little has often been a word used to describe me. Buthis--orMy,in the first person as he uses the possessive -- I have never before been a His or a My. It is that sense of being claimed that makes me blush with pleasure.

Am I too silly a woman to be taken seriously by any serious person? Certainly Dr. Johnson would say I should be contemplating the turns and turmoils of the play at hand. That revered man would tell me to empty my head of all romantic fantasy except that which will be included in my work, thus helping me earn a living through the theater box office.

Oh I I wish Daddy Crisp were still alive! He would certainly have been pleased to find me so besotted as to entertain him with girlish frivolities. Were he here today, I would surely dance a boisterous spree, celebrating the fact that a French soldier has called me his own.

I am surrounded by near strangers, unable to sing my joyful song. Even Lorsagne has been silent these many weeks she has been away in France. I do so long for her return. She at least is not shocked by open conversation of my secret yearnings. I so hope her business in France goes well and comes to a happy conclusion so that she can return here before I am forced to leave. At the very least, I hope she is able to write. Her letters are such a balm to my lonely soul. Of course, Susan and Hetty write frequently. So do Father and Dr. Johnson, but it is Lorsagne to whom I have confessed my deep feelings for my soldier. I miss my friend.

And now I must ready for supper. I am told there will be a gathering of local dignitaries. I am expected to attend. How I detest these parades in which I am a literary monkey expected to enlighten and impress. I would much rather take bread and cheese on a tray in my rooms. If only I were ill-- then I could be excused from enforced social gaiety. Alas, it is my lot to play the lady novelist for an audience of men unlikely ever to read an English novel, much less romances penned by a woman. Perhaps if I dress quickly for the evening's entertainment, I can take advantage of the few remaining minutes of light to take in some sea air before transforming myself into a dancing chimpanzee.

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The Virtual Diary of Fanny Burney In Italy


By Stephanie Mesler, 2014-09-12

1784, 12 September

Dearest Whomever, I find myself once again turning to these pages for solace and guidance when none is forthcoming elsewhere. I grow more restless as the summer turns to Fall, knowing that I must soon make a decision regarding my winter time accommodations. I could stay right where I am, in Italy, quietly content among the people of this lovely Island. It is certainly true that it is inexpensive living here. Also true that saving money while I complete the drama is an absolute goal. My heart's desire is, of course, to return home to Father, family, and most perfect England in time for Yule. But, there, my presence would certainly be a financial strain on Father, who does not need any further strain, already being encumbered by The Grande Dame, my dearest second mother. I should hate to be the cause of further stress for my father. And, if I am to be completely honest -- and why shouldn't I be in the unseen pages of this diary? -- I do desire something even more than to spend the winter with family and friends at home. My heart's greatest desire is to spend Christmas in the company of a certain French soldier.

I have finally received word from him. He tells me that he would like nothing more than to board the next boat south from Marseilles but finds himself pressed into further service for his King. Henri has written, "The King himself has asked for me. How can one refuse such an invitation to serve at the will of Louis?"

I would like to be impressed by this-- how many men can say they have been called by name to royal service? And of course, I am impressed-- it's just that impressed and happy are not the same thing. I would be happier if the French King were to shine his radiant favor elsewhere for just a few months. I don't mean to keep the good Lieutenant from his duties forever, of course, but it would be nice if he were free just long enough for us get to know one another a little better. Henri alludes to his plans for the future and seems to imply that these plans include "my little English novelist," as he calls me. Is it silly that my heart flutters as I write these words? His little novelist. I have been called a novelist before, and many names far less flattering as well. Little has often been a word used to describe me. Buthis--orMy,in the first person as he uses the possessive -- I have never before been a His or a My. It is that sense of being claimed that makes me blush with pleasure.

Am I too silly a woman to be taken seriously by any serious person? Certainly Dr. Johnson would say I should be contemplating the turns and turmoils of the play at hand. That revered man would tell me to empty my head of all romantic fantasy except that which will be included in my work, thus helping me earn a living through the theater box office.

Oh I I wish Daddy Crisp were still alive! He would certainly have been pleased to find me so besotted as to entertain him with girlish frivolities. Were he here today, I would surely dance a boisterous spree, celebrating the fact that a French soldier has called me his own.

I am surrounded by near strangers, unable to sing my joyful song. Even Lorsagne has been silent these many weeks she has been away in France. I do so long for her return. She at least is not shocked by open conversation of my secret yearnings. I so hope her business in France goes well and comes to a happy conclusion so that she can return here before I am forced to leave. At the very least, I hope she is able to write. Her letters are such a balm to my lonely soul. Of course, Susan and Hetty write frequently. So do Father and Dr. Johnson, but it is Lorsagne to whom I have confessed my deep feelings for my soldier. I miss my friend.

And now I must ready for supper. I am told there will be a gathering of local dignitaries. I am expected to attend. How I detest these parades in which I am a literary monkey expected to enlighten and impress. I would much rather take bread and cheese on a tray in my rooms. If only I were ill-- then I could be excused from enforced social gaiety. Alas, it is my lot to play the lady novelist for an audience of men unlikely ever to read an English novel, much less romances penned by a woman. Perhaps if I dress quickly for the evening's entertainment, I can take advantage of the few remaining minutes of light to take in some sea air before transforming myself into a dancing chimpanzee.

951_blogs.jpg?width=750

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Happy News Regarding The Royal Retreat!


By Stephanie Mesler, 2014-09-05

I have just purchased a homestead which will be the location for The Royal Retreat. Now I am just waiting for it to be moved where I want it so I can start creating the environment. In the retreat's first incarnation, RP time will be set from 1786-91, the court of King George III and Queen Charlotte during the time of Fanny Burney and Mary Delaney.

I am very excited! Please spread the word about this historical RP and invite your friends. They can join The Royal Retreat here on Ning or inworld. I am Freda Frostbite in SL (though my rp character is Fanny Burney). Folks can contact me with questions and ideas. It would really rock my world if folks wanted to create the characters of Mary Delaney, George III, Queen Charlotte, as well as theprincesand princesses who lived with their parents between 1786and 1791. Particularly interesting male characters would be Charles Burney (Fanny's famous father), George Cambridge and Stephen Digby (men who disappointed Fanny deeply). These are JUST suggestions though. Of course, other RP characters are welcome.

Mrs. Mary Delaney was a talented artist as well as an intimate friend of the King and Queen. Also counted as friends were Jonathon Swift, Margaret Bentinck, and Josepf Banks. She began her career as one of England's most beloved artists at 72 years of age.

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Frances Burney was arguably the most popular novelist of her time. Jane Austen was one of her proteges. She was very close to Dr. Samuel Johnson and Hester Thrale. She thought of Mary Delaney as a grandmother figure. It was that friendship that led to Fanny's appointment to the court of George III and Charlotte. Eventually she married a french constitutionalist in exile, Alexandre D'Arblay.

945_blogs.jpg

George III and his Queen, Charlotte, were (by all accounts) very much in love for the duration of their marriage. Their time together was marred by loss and tragedy, but theirs was far more than a marriage of royal convenience. The period inclusive for this RP includes an assassination attempt byMrs Margaret Nicholson and the period of the King's first bout of "madness."

946_blogs.jpg?width=750

Posted in: default | 5 comments

Happy News Regarding The Royal Retreat!


By Stephanie Mesler, 2014-09-05

I have just purchased a homestead which will be the location for The Royal Retreat. Now I am just waiting for it to be moved where I want it so I can start creating the environment. In the retreat's first incarnation, RP time will be set from 1786-91, the court of King George III and Queen Charlotte during the time of Fanny Burney and Mary Delaney.

I am very excited! Please spread the word about this historical RP and invite your friends. They can join The Royal Retreat here on Ning or inworld. I am Freda Frostbite in SL (though my rp character is Fanny Burney). Folks can contact me with questions and ideas. It would really rock my world if folks wanted to create the characters of Mary Delaney, George III, Queen Charlotte, as well as theprincesand princesses who lived with their parents between 1786and 1791. Particularly interesting male characters would be Charles Burney (Fanny's famous father), George Cambridge and Stephen Digby (men who disappointed Fanny deeply). These are JUST suggestions though. Of course, other RP characters are welcome.

Mrs. Mary Delaney was a talented artist as well as an intimate friend of the King and Queen. Also counted as friends were Jonathon Swift, Margaret Bentinck, and Josepf Banks. She began her career as one of England's most beloved artists at 72 years of age.

944_blogs.jpg

Frances Burney was arguably the most popular novelist of her time. Jane Austen was one of her proteges. She was very close to Dr. Samuel Johnson and Hester Thrale. She thought of Mary Delaney as a grandmother figure. It was that friendship that led to Fanny's appointment to the court of George III and Charlotte. Eventually she married a french constitutionalist in exile, Alexandre D'Arblay.

945_blogs.jpg

George III and his Queen, Charlotte, were (by all accounts) very much in love for the duration of their marriage. Their time together was marred by loss and tragedy, but theirs was far more than a marriage of royal convenience. The period inclusive for this RP includes an assassination attempt byMrs Margaret Nicholson and the period of the King's first bout of "madness."

946_blogs.jpg?width=750

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