The Affianced One is a novel—a true novel—by the author
of Ger- trude, a work with which, probably, our readers are acquainted, though we are not, for the name is placed in the titlepage as a thing whereby the author may be known. The writer is doubtless a lady, and one who has resided abroad ; and instead of giving us her journal, dishes tip her Italian tour or residence in the shape of successive batches of fiction. It would be wrong to say we do not feel admiration for the autho'ress of the Affianced One : it would be wrong to say we felt any—at least much—for her book. We have read it all before : it is in the circulating library—not in any one book, but it is in the whole collection—the catalogue is its index. The great slate quarry of circulating fiction, which splits into leaves innumerable, is the store from which, together with a foreign tour, the materials of the Affianced One are drawn. But why, then, do we feel any admiration for the authoress ? Our admiration shall be no secret : we know not whether this divine person rejoices in auburn or in grey—whether she rustles in silk or folds in cachmere, breakfasts at ten or three, rolls in a car- riage of her own, or demands the occasional aid of those vehicles which boast the kingly crown and revel in the various combinations of the Arabic numerals. She may dip her fingers or her pen into the ink for any thing we know, or be as fine- as Lady MoanAN, with a pearl pen, prepared to coquet in her boudoir with the great German Prince P.USKY-MUSKY ; but we cannot be indifferent to the truly feminine manner in which the incidents of her novel are RE-conceived. It is the circulating library, but it is the circulating library refined—filtered—in a machine far more intricate and cobwebby than Mr. ROBINS'S ma- chine—namely, that most curious, nay, marvellous species of arachnoid, the pia mater of a woman. How very naturally the sub- ject falls in with the character of female speculation, will be under- stood when we say, that the Affianced One is one of the loveliest creatures God ever created in that most mysterious of shapes—the female form ; and that at the very close of the third volume she is deprived of all her beauty by a most virulent attack of smallpox I The Prince of Santa Croce was the best and most amiable of men, but he looked upon her face and fainted. To confess the truth, we cried bitterly over the change ; but what, with all our know- ledge of medicine, could we do ? Her mother was a weak and bigoted person, and did not permit inoculation ; and though we saw before we had got to the end of a volume what was going to happen, it was impossible to prevent her taking it in a natural way. The next novel that comes before us we trust will take the Cholera in hand ; it. will prove a far finer trial of constancy than smallpox, especially if the lover he a contagionist. We should be wrong in not adding, that the Affianced One will interest all those who have stayed any time at Milan ; next, that the authoress is clever at sketches of scenes of society ; and again, that though her incidents are somewhat uses, she has handled them with a feeling and delicacy truly feminine—although the principal one is assuredly in its nature revolting.