1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Kavanagh, Julia

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KAVANAGH, JULIA (1824-1877), British novelist, was born at Thurles in Tipperary, Ireland, in 1824. She was the daughter of Morgan Peter Kavanagh (d. 1874), author of various worthless philological works and some poems. Julia spent several years of her early life with her parents in Normandy, laying there the foundation of a mastery of the French language and insight into French modes of thought, which was perfected by her later frequent and long residences in France. Miss Kavanagh's literary career began with her arrival in London about 1844, and her uneventful life affords few incidents to the biographer. Her first book was Three Paths (1847), a story for the young; but her first work to attract notice was Madeleine, a Tale of Auvergne (1848). Other books followed: A Summer and Winter in the Two Sicilies (1858); French Women of Letters (1862); English Women of Letters (1862); Woman in France during the 18th Century (1850); and Women of Christianity (1852). The scenes of her stories are almost always laid in France, and she handles her French themes with fidelity and skill. Her style is simple and pleasing rather than striking; and her characters are interesting without being strongly individualized. Her most popular novels were perhaps Adèle (1857), Queen Mab (1863), and John Dorrien (1875). On the outbreak of the Franco-German War Julia Kavanagh removed with her mother from Paris to Rouen. She died at Nice on the 28th of October 1877.