Author of the Month

December 2020 – The Brontë Family

I’m doing things a bit differently this month…instead of just one author, I’m doing a whole family – The Brontë Sisters! The sisters are, from the eldest; Charlotte, Emily and Anne. All the sisters worked as a governess at some point in their lives, which served as inspiration for certain writing, themes and novels.

Their stories immediately attracted attention for their passion and originality. Charlotte’s Jane Eyre was the first to know success, while Emily’s Wuthering Heights, Anne’s The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and other works were later to be accepted as masterpieces of literature.

Wikipedia
The Brontë family, by Branwell, who painted over himself after realising the ‘composition was too cramped’. National Portrait Gallery/Wikimedia

Charlotte:

Charlotte Brontë, the eldest of the Brontë sister, was born on 21 April 1816, she died at age 38 on the March 1855. In the early days of her of her writing she used the pseudonym Currer Bell. She was a novelist and poet best known for her novel Jane Eyre. Jane Eyre was her second novel and was published in 1847. Brontë’s third novel, the last published in her lifetime, was Villete, which appeared in 1853 (Wikipedia).

Emily:

Emily was born on 30 July 1818. She was an English novelist and poet who is best known for her only novel, Wuthering Heights, now considered a classic of English literature. She published novels and poetry under the pseudonym Ellis Bell. Emily Brontë remains a mysterious figure and a challenge to biographers because there is limited information about her, due to her solitary and reclusive nature. (Wikipedia)

Anne:

Anne, the youngest sister, was born on 17 January 1820. She was an English novelist and poet, the youngest member of the Brontë literary family. her novels were first published under the masculine pen name of Acton Bell. 

Branwell:

They had a brother, Patrick Branwell who was born 1817. He was born a year after Charlotte and a year before Emily. Known as Branwell, he was a painter, writer and casual worker. He became addicted to alcohol and laudanum and died at Haworth on 24 September 1848 at the age of 31.

All the sisters died when they were pretty young. They had two older sister (older than Charlotte) as well who died young

Maria (1814–1825), was the fist born. She returned from school with an advanced case of tuberculosis and died at Haworth at the age of 11 on 6 May 1825. The second child was Elizabeth (1815–1825). She suffered the same fate as Maria. (Wikipedia)

Deaths of the sisters:

Charlotte died on 31 March 1855 just before reaching the age of 39. The cause of death given at the time was tuberculosis, but it may have been complicated with typhoid fever.

Emily died on the 19th of December 1848 at the age of 30 and Wuthering Heights was her only novel. In September 1848 her health began to decline rapidly. Consumptive, but refusing all treatment, with the exception of a visit from a London doctor – because although it was already too late, her relatives insisted. (Wikipedia)

Anne died on 28 May 1849 at the age of 29. Anne’s health began to decline rapidly, like that of her brother and sister some months earlier.

The Brontë sisters, cross hatch style modern illustration
Credit: Alamy Stock Photo

Works-Cited List

“Brontë family”. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 25 November. 2020, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bront%C3%AB_family

“The Brontë Sisters (1818-1855)”. BBC, BBC © 2014, 28 November. 2020, http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/bronte_sisters.shtml.

“Anne Brontë”. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 29 November 2020. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne_Bront%C3%AB

“Charlotte Brontë”. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 29 November 2020. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlotte_Bront%C3%AB

“Emily Brontë”. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 29 November 2020. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emily_Bront%C3%AB

Pouliot, Amber. “The Brontë family”, How incest became part of the Brontë family story, The Conversation Africa, Inc., July 26, 2018, https://theconversation.com/how-incest-became-part-of-the-bronte-family-story-100059, 28 November 2020

“The Brontë sisters, cross hatch style modern illustration”. Country Life. January 18, 2020. https://www.countrylife.co.uk/comment-opinion/curious-questions-anne-bronte-famous-without-two-sisters-210364. 01 December 2020.

“Credit Alamy Stock Photo”. Country Life. January 18, 2020. https://www.countrylife.co.uk/comment-opinion/curious-questions-anne-bronte-famous-without-two-sisters-210364. 01 December 2020.

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