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Last December, when this book was almost completed, a volume was published calling itself , written by his niece, Miss Georgiana M.
Stisted, stated to be issued “with the authority and approval of the Burton family.” This statement is not correct — at any rate not wholly so; for several of the relatives of the late Sir Richard Burton have written to Lady Burton’s sister to say that they altogether disapprove of it.
The book contained a number of cruel and unjust charges against Lady Burton, which were rendered worse by the fact that they were not made until she was dead and could no longer defend herself.
Some of these attacks were so paltry and malevolent, and so utterly foreign to Lady Burton’s generous and truthful character, that they may be dismissed with contempt.
To this end I have revised and incorporated the fragment of autobiography which was cut short by her death, and I have also pieced together all her letters, manuscripts, and journals which have a bearing on her travels and adventures.
In the first place, though Lady Burton published comparatively little, she was a voluminous writer, and she left behind her such a mass of letters and manuscripts that the sorting of them alone was a formidable task.Layout styles which are irrelevant to the meaning of the work have been changed to our "house" style.Content changes have been restricted to the following: Lady Burton began her autobiography a few months before she died, but in consequence of rapidly failing health she made little progress with it.So much has been written concerning Sir Richard Burton that it is not necessary for me to tell again the story of his life here, and I have therefore been able to write wholly of his wife, an equally congenial task.Lady Burton was as remarkable as a woman as her husband was as a man.