Written by Hester Lynch Thrale. Published 1951 by Oxford at the Clarendon Press. Edited by Katherine C. Balderston When Hester was thirty-five years old, her husband Henry gave her a set of six handsome quarto blank books, bound in undressed calf, each bearing on its cover a red label stamped in gold with the title Thraliana. This took place in 1776, a few weeks before their thirteenth wedding anniversary. Thraliana is a collection of Hester Lynch Thrale's thoughts, experiences and some of her verses from this period of her life. It was important because it was almost, if not quite, the first English Ana.
Hester Lynch Thrale's writings
Hester was a prolific writer of verses, and later books. This article summarises her work.
Being arrived at the interesting moment when Retrospection ceases and observation is begun, our book must with this chapter end itself, and be submitted to the reader's Retrospect. If found at last too short for use, too long for entertainment, the writer will be sorry.
I have written an extempore Prologue, or rather an occasional Prologue—(tho’ I did make it in half an hour) for the Regent to come out again with after Siddons’s Illness; it alludes to the new Exhibition of a beautiful Woman one Mrs Wells, who has diverted the Town by Imitations of our great Actress, while She was laid up with ill Health & Grief.
I do think that Mrs Siddons for Vigour of Action, pathetic Tone of Voice, & a sort of Radiance which comes round her in Scenes where strong heroic Virtues are displayed, never had her Equal. For Versatility of Genius, or Comprehension of various Characters, Pritchard was greatly her Superior: Add to this, that our present Idol is eminently handsome—dear Pritchard’s Person came against her perpetually—but what a Mind She had!
Written by Hester Lynch Thrale in Naples, Italy February 1786. Thraliana entry dated 30 June 1786. When I arrived at Naples there was luckily an Eruption of the neighbouring Mountain; nor have I ever yet seen anything which rival’d the first Sight of Vesuvius for Interest or general Effect.
Mr Murphy dined here Yesterday—his Company & conversation reminded me of past Times: The Greatheeds & Mrs Siddons were our party & Mr Parsons who is likewise a Conspirator in forming this new Play: which turning on maternal Tenderness towards her little Son Carlos, I thought the following Epilogue would suit Mrs Siddons nicely, but I believe She dont like it herself.
A la vérité ce n'est ici qu'un fragment, mais dans les travaux les plus achevés des hommes il n'y a que des fragments.
The Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson or the Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson, LL.D. During the Last Twenty Years of His Life by Hester Thrale, was first published 26 March 1786.
It was based on the various notes and anecdotes of Samuel Johnson that Thrale kept in her Thraliana. She wrote the work in Italy while she lived there for three years after marrying Gabriel Piozzi.
The work was first published 26 March 1786.
Written by Mr Pepys in December 1762. Thraliana entry dated June 1777.
Mr Pepys the Master in Chancery addressed the following Verses to Mr Thrale last October 1776—On his Wedding Day.