A lady can do no wrong
December 15, 2011 2:08 PM   Subscribe

An Essay On The Noble Science Of Self-Justification: "Timid brides, you have, probably, hitherto been addressed as angels. Prepare for the time when you shall again become mortal. Take the alarm at the first approach of blame; at the first hint of a discovery that you are any thing less than infallible:--contradict, debate, justify, recriminate, rage, weep, swoon, do any thing but yield to conviction. I take it for granted that you have already acquired sufficient command of voice; you need not study its compass; going beyond its pitch has a peculiarly happy effect upon some occasions. But are you voluble enough to drown all sense in a torrent of words? Can you be loud enough to overpower the voice of all who shall attempt to interrupt or contradict you? Are you mistress of the petulant, the peevish, and the sullen tone? Have you practised the sharpness which provokes retort, and the continual monotony which by setting your adversary to sleep effectually precludes reply?" For remember, "a lady can do no wrong."
posted by shivohum (5 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Man. Hard to believe the multi-camera sitcom didn't exist in Maria Edgeworth's day.
posted by yoink at 2:12 PM on December 15, 2011

Metafilter: all the objects which the most remotely concern you.
posted by michaelh at 2:14 PM on December 15, 2011

Written in 1787--published in 1795.

Hard to read and no context. Is this satire? What's it about?
posted by grobstein at 2:14 PM on December 15, 2011

Yes, it's satire: it's a satire about the way men and women fight which pretends to laud women for refusing to ever admit that they're wrong in a domestic dispute of any kind while poking fun at them for it. I wouldn't have thought it needed a lot of context as most of the attitudes seem to remain remarkably current (the point of my sitcom comment).

tl:dr: it's a "women, can't live with 'em, can't shoot 'em" piece but done in a nicely arch way.
posted by yoink at 2:20 PM on December 15, 2011

My brain is fried so it's hard to penetrate the language. Perhaps it's easy enough to get if you successfully read it. Thanks yoink!
posted by grobstein at 3:10 PM on December 15, 2011

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