Letitia Elizabeth Landon (L.E.L.) (1802-1838)
From 1800-1829 Literary Anecdotes

MY cottage overlooked the mansion and grounds of Mr. Landon, the father of L.E.L., at Old Brompton; a narrow lane only dividing our residences. My first recollection of the future poetess is that of a plump girl, grown enough to be almost mistaken for a woman, bowling a hoop round the walks, with the hoop-stick in one hand and a book in the other, reading as she ran, and as well as she could manage both exercise and instruction at the same time. The exercise was prescribed and insisted upon; the book was her own irrepressible choice.

Jerdan, Autobiography, ii. 174.

William Jerdan
35 Rue-le-Grande,
Lundi,( which being done into English means Monday.)

Dear Sir,
I hope you will not think that I intend writing you to death; but I cannot let this opportunity pass.... I am quite surprised that I should have so little to tell you; but really I have nothing, as ill-luck would have it. I went to call on Madame Tastu, from whom I rereived a charming note, and while I was out Monsieur Sainte-Beuve and Monsieur Odilon Barrot called.... M. Heine called yesterday; a most pleasant person. I am afraid he did not think me a personne bien spirituelle, for you know it takes a long time with me to get over the shame of speaking to a stranger by way of conversation. He said,

`Mademoiselle donc a beaucoup couru les boutiques?'— Mais non.
A-t-elle été au Jardin des Plantes? — Mais non.
Avez-vous été a l'opèra, aux théàtres? — Mais non.
Peut-être Mademoiselle aime la promenade? — Mais non.
A-t-elle donc apporté beaucoup de livres, ou peut-être elle écrit? — Mais non.

At last, in seeming despair, he exclaimed,

`Mais, Mademoiselle, qu'est que ce donc, qu'elle a fait?'— Mais—mais—j'ai regardé par la fenêtre.

Was there ever anything si bête? but I really could think of nothing else.

Jerdan, Autobiography, iii. 195.

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