Literary critic George Saintsbury argued that Jane Austen's naturalistic female characters owed a debt to this society novel's spirited heroine. Certainly when Austen was updating her early novel-draft 'Susan', which eventually appeared in print renamed as Northanger Abbey, she added a reference to Belinda:
“ 'Oh, it is only a novel.....It is only Cecilia or Camilla, or Belinda '; or, in short, only some work in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed”.
Belinda was itself in the tradition of society novels by writers such as Frances Sheridan and Frances Burney, who also charted the travails of bright young women in search of a good marriage. Perhaps Edgeworth's best courtship novel, Belinda replaces mercenary fortune-hunting with a deeper quest for marital compatibility, valorising irrationality and love over reason and duty in a way that prefigures Austen's treatments of the same theme.
Aristocrat Lady Delacour in Belinda has been compared to Miss Milner in Elizabeth Inchbald’s A Simple Story (1791).