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Susanna Blamire entry: Overview screen.
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Overview
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Life
Writing and Life
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Susanna Blamire was a later eighteenth-century poet with strong local roots. From her youth she wrote occasional poems and songs for her friends. She gave them away, generally without keeping copies. Some slipped anonymously and separately into print. She was a great observer of social life, and a gently humorous satirist of it. Some poems (including her best-known, the topographical poem "Stoklewath; or, The Cumbrian Village") carry a political message. Her surviving output of about a hundred poems and songs is mostly written in standard English, but she has been most steadily remembered for her works in two distinct dialects: Scots and Cumbrian. Bibliographic Citation link.
Milestones
12 January 1747 SB was born at Cardew Hall, near Dalston in Cumberland, the youngest in a family of four survivors out of six. Bibliographic Citation link.
1766 SB apparently attached this date to a poem entitled "Written in a Churchyard, On Seeing a Number of Cattle Grazing in it", which captures less of the rhythms of speech than her mature poems. Bibliographic Citation link.
1771 SB is said to have written or begun writing "Stoklewath; or, The Cumbrian Village". If it does date from this year, it remained unfinished and unpublished for seventy years. Bibliographic Citation link.
April 1793 SB seems to have been writing her last datable poems about now, a year before she died. Several concern the fragility of her own health. Bibliographic Citation link.
5 April 1794 SB died at 14 Finkle Street, Carlisle, almost certainly of rheumatic heart disease, at the age of forty-seven. Bibliographic Citation link.
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