Fanny Trollope

Frances “Fanny” Trollope (1779 – 1863) was a prolific English novelist and writer who wrote forty books, six travelogues, thirty-four novels, and numerous polemical articles and poems. Trollope took up the profession of writing at the age of fifty-two, soon after her husband declared bankruptcy. Her social novels, including one against slavery, are believed to have influenced Harriet Beecher Stowe. A reverend’s daughter, she also penned two anti-Catholic novels and is often credited with writing the first industrial novel. She was also mother to seven children, one of whom, Anthony Trollope, would become a noted English novelist. The New Monthly Magazine, a well-known nineteenth-century English publication wrote that, “No other author of the present day has been at once so read, so much admired, and so much abused.” Excerpted here is a chapter from perhaps her best-known work, Domestic Manners of the Americans, an 1832 collection of observations on emergent American life resulting from her travels to the United States.

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