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The Coquette: or, The History of Eliza Wharton (Dover Thrift Editions)


Based on the true and tragic story of Eliza Whitman, the subject of America’s first tabloid scandal, this 1797 sentimental novel both satirizes and pays homage to its moralistic predecessors. The heroine’s dilemma – a choice between duty, romance, and her personal freedom – reflects the limited options available to 18th-century women.

About the Author

Hannah Webster Foster (1758-1840) wrote political articles for Boston newspapers and contributed to America’s first literary magazine, The Monthly Anthology or Magazine of Polite Literature, later known as the North American Review. Her first novel, The Coquette, was reprinted several times in her lifetime.