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Catherine Fanshawe entry: Overview screen.
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Writing
Life
Writing and Life
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Catherine Fanshawe wrote mostly in the early nineteenth century, though she began before the end of the old century. She composed private poems and letters (of which only a tiny proportion survive); sophisticated, high-spirited, sharp-tongued parodies; political commentary in poetry; and verse jokes, often at the expense of established writers. Her high reputation during her lifetime was entirely that of an amateur, and so did not long survive.
Milestones
6 July 1765 CF was born at her father's estate, Shabden at Chipstead in Surrey; she was the middle one in a family of three sisters; one brother died very young and the other as a young man. Bibliographic Citation link.
1801 CF composed what eventually became one of the best-known of her little-known poems; it was later entitled "Epistle to Earl Harcourt, on his wishing her to spell the name of Catherine with a K". Bibliographic Citation link.
March 1833 Catherine Fanshawe wrote two political verse satires which appeared anonymously in the Morning Post: "Provision for a Family" and "Speech of the Member for Odium". Bibliographic Citation link.  scholarly note link.
14 April 1834 CF died at nearly seventy while staying at Putney Heath; she had suffered badly for months from a disease of the spine. Bibliographic Citation link.  scholarly note link.
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