Date of this Version
The George Eliot Review 18 (1987)
Almost twenty years ago, for the first time, I joined the small group of admirers who annually pay tribute to the memory of Nuneaton's famous daughter.
It is perhaps fitting that my last public duty, albeit as ex-Curator, should be connected with George Eliot. Over the years I have listened with interest to the various speakers, each with their own particular reason for being honoured with the responsibility for laying the Fellowship tribute.
I have heard Lewes and Evans descendants recount family memories handed down with pride. Last year we heard John Letts tell us of the close bond which developed between Sculptor and Authoress as his wonderful interpretation of George Eliot was being created.
With John last year you had the sublime; this year, with me, you have the ridiculous, or, at least, the mundane. For, over the years, with that part of my work connected with George Eliot, I developed the feeling that I was her housekeeper. I kept her 'home' in good order, I polished her piano and cleaned her shoes. I received her visitors and showed them the Mistress's needlework, her father's wood carving and the art work of her friends.