Laetitia Matilda Hawkins

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Laetitia Matilda Hawkins (baptized 8 August 1759[1] – 22 November 1835) was an English novelist, associated with Twickenham. She was the daughter of Sir John Hawkins, an acquaintance of Samuel Johnson.[2]

Hawkins was an outspoken yet highly conservative British woman author. In 1793, she published the inflammatory Letters on the Female Mind, Its Powers and Pursuits. Addressed to Miss H.M. Williams, with particular reference to Her Letters from France, a two-volume attack on Helen Maria Williams's Continental political writings, which asserted that 'every female politician is a hearsay politician'.[3] The Analytical Review described Letters as a 'rant […] written with much ill temper'.[4]

She wrote at least four novels, including The Countess and Gertrude (1811), and she also acted as an amanuensis for her father. Her work was published anonymously until after Sir John's death in 1789.

She is a character in Beryl Bainbridge's novel According to Queeney.

Works[edit]

  • Letters on the Female Mind, Its Powers and Pursuits. Addressed to Miss H.M. Williams, with particular reference to Her Letters from France (1793)
  • Rosanne; or A father’s labour lost (1814)
  • Thoughts on our national calamity: in a letter to a friend in Ireland (1817)
  • Heraline; or, Opposite proceedings (1821)
  • Annaline; or, Motive-hunting (1824)
  • Memoirs, anecdotes, facts and opinions (1824)

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Bertram Hylton Davis. A proof of eminence: the life of Sir John Hawkins. Indiana University Press, 1972. Page 62.
  2. ^ Pat Rogers (1996). The Samuel Johnson Encyclopedia. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 176–. ISBN 978-0-313-29411-2. 
  3. ^ Laetitia Matilda Hawkins, Letters on the Female Mind, Its Powers and Pursuits. Addressed to Miss H.M. Williams, with particular reference to Her Letters from France, 2vols (London: Printed for Hookman and Carpenter, Bond-Street, 1793) I, p. 110.
  4. ^ Analytical Review, or History of Literature, Domestic and Foreign, 15 [London: J. Johnson, 1793], p. 527.   

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