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Elizabeth Barrett Browning Essay

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Elizabeth Barrett Browning was born on March 6, 1806, in Coxhoe Hall, Durham, England. She was the eldest of eleven children born of Edward and Mary Moulton-Barrett (DISCovering Authors). Her father was a “possessive and autocratic man loved by his children even though he rigidly controlled their lives” (Encyclopedia of World Biography). Although he forbid his daughters to marry, he always managed to encourage their scholarly pursuits (DISCovering Authors). Her mother, Mary Graham-Clarke, was a prosperous woman who earned their wealth from a sugar plantation in Jamaica (EXPLORING Poetry). When Elizabeth was “three years old, the family moved to Hope End in Herefordshire,, and she spent the next twenty-three years of her life in this…show more content…
Furthermore on July 11, 1840 her favorite brother and constant companion, Edward drowned. Elizabeth considered this event the greatest sorrow in her life and refused to speak of the loss even with those closest to her (EXPLORING Poetry). For the next five years she remained in her room and saw no one but her family and a couple close friends (Encyclopedia of World Biography). This tragedy sent her into a depression the worsened her condition (DISCovering Authors). In 1832 the Barrett’s were forced to auction their large country estate due to financial incomes losses at their Jamaican sugar plantations and occupy a temporary residence in the south of England (EXPLORING Poetry). Six years later the family settled permanently at 50 Wimpole Street in London (Encyclopedia of World Biography). In 1833, Barrett published her first volume of poetry, Promethus Bound: Translated from the Greek of Aeschylus, and Miscellaneous Poems anonymously, which went nearly unnoticed by the public (EXPLORING Poetry) (Encyclopedia of World Biography). Discouraged, Elizabeth received influence from Hugh Stuart Boyd, a blind, middle-aged scholar. He directed Barrett to prolong her studies in classical Greek literature. As a result of Boyd’s guidance, she published her first major work in 1838, The Seraphim and Other Poems. It was given “long and mainly favorable reviews in the leading journals” (Hayter). It received critical praise and subsequently acknowledged her as one of
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