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She cites Samuel Johnson, writing: “Getting money is not part of the Business of Life.” On the next page she writes: “…It taught me to keep accounts, to save my income, [and] to avoid sacrificing future comfort to present amusement or ostentatious [and] vain Expenditure-E. In a confessional moment, Elizabeth writes, “I was like the Egg of the ostrich laid in the sand for any thing or person who chose to crush or to cherish me.” Looking to some of the most significant relationships in Elizabeth’s life, that last passage in particular speaks volumes.Her relationships with Jérôme, her father, and her son all seem to share the lack of control over how she might be treated that is implicit in that statement.The opportunity to partner with highly intelligent, passionate and curious people enriches my life and makes me excited for what each new day might bring.Much can be learned from the pages of Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte’s twenty-one surviving account books: her material purchasing habits, diet, lifestyle, travels, opinions of family members, and much, much more.Her account books are part financial account, shopping record, inventory, journal, and commonplace book.

They also record her material consumption patterns, the ways she spent and managed her money, the purchases she made, and her travels­­ in both Europe and America.Her account books documents a recipe for hair dye, as well as various compounds to create creams and possibly cosmetics.If she must age, she was going to do it as gracefully as possible.Her finances were one area of her life where she could take control.Elizabeth’s writings in particular speak to the mentality of a woman driven by a need for power and control at a time in America’s history when women often had little power over their own circumstances.

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