Helen Maria Williams

Standard Name: Williams, Helen Maria
Birth Name: Helen Maria Williams
HMW wrote, during the Romantic or revolutionary period, as a woman with a mission, eager to see change for the better in the political, international world. She was a radical and egalitarian in gender relations too, although she believed that femininity comprised especial sensibility. Despite her two novels (one original and one translated), she is best known for her earlier poetry and her later political commentary on events in France, cast in the form of published letters.
Stippple engraving of Helen Maria Williams by Dean and Munday, published in 1816, from unknown portrait, Her hair is part in loose curls and part gathered to the top of her head. She is wearing a white, low-necked gown, a black mantle, and a double pearl necklace on which hangs a Maltese cross The portrait is oval, and has her name written underneath.
"Helen Maria Williams" Retrieved from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:HelenMariaWilliams.jpg. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) Public Domain Dedication license. This work is in the public domain.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Friends, Associates Charlotte Smith
CS met Helen Maria Williams during her brief visit to revolutionary France. She provided an introduction to Williams for William Wordsworth (who had in fact met or perhaps merely seen her already) before he too...
Friends, Associates Mary Wollstonecraft
In Paris MW met several of her radical friends from London, like Tom Paine , as well as Helen Maria Williams and her lover John Hurford Stone . She also met French revolutionaries like Manon Roland
Friends, Associates Sydney Owenson, Lady Morgan
On her first visit to Paris, she met Germaine de Staël , and formed lasting friendships with the marquise de Villette (Voltaire 's adopted daughter) and with Elizabeth Patterson (an American heiress, the abandoned...
Friends, Associates Stéphanie-Félicité de Genlis
SFG was visited during the Revolution by Helen Maria Williams (who mentioned her works with respect in print). After her final return to France the flocks of visiting Britons who continued to seek her out...
Friends, Associates Amelia Opie
She had already begun to move in fashionable circles, and became friendly with Lady Caroline Lamb , Lady Cork , and painters James Northcote and Sir Joshua Reynolds .
Opie, Amelia. “Introduction”. Adeline Mowbray, edited by Shelley King and John B. Pierce, Oxford University Press, 1999, p. i - xxix.
In 1802, in London and...
Friends, Associates Anne Plumptre
Their friends included Eliza Fenwick , Helen Maria Williams , Susannah Taylor , Mary Hays , Amelia Opie , Thomas Holcroft , John Thelwall , and other radicals. AP supported Thelwall's local electioneering, and Ann Jebb
Friends, Associates Joanna Baillie
Over the course of her long life JB made dozens of well-loved friends, many of them either professional writers like herself or else writing amateurs. They included Lucy Aikin , Mary Berry , Eliza Fletcher
Friends, Associates Mary Scott
MS was probably a friend from an early age of the dissenting hymn-writer Anne Steele , who lived not very far away and who was a generation older. They spent much time together in 1773...
Friends, Associates Anna Letitia Barbauld
The literary society of ALB 's time was, as biographer Betsy Rodgers notes, small and intimate.
Rodgers, Betsy. Georgian Chronicle: Mrs Barbauld and her Family. Methuen, 1958.
Writers all knew each other and kept in touch; those who did not live in London visited frequently...
Friends, Associates Anna Seward
AS , visiting London, spent a lot of time with Helen Maria Williams and her lively social circle.
Ashmun, Margaret. The Singing Swan. Yale University Press; H. Milford, Oxford University Press, 1931.
Intertextuality and Influence Helen Craik
This appeared in four volumes from the Minerva Press . Its title seems to be the root source of scholarly confusion of HC with Catherine Cuthbertson . HC was clearly familiar with Helen Maria Williams
Intertextuality and Influence Elizabeth Moody
She has a sharp eye for gender issues, including those surrounding domestic work. The Housewife's Prayer is addressed to Economy, a name which might be loosely translated as balancing the budget, and ends with the...
Intertextuality and Influence Judith Sargent Murray
She backs this pleasure in modernity with a remarkable grasp of former female history and of the women's literary tradition in English and its contexts. She mentions the Greek foremother Sappho , the patriotic heroism...
Intertextuality and Influence Mary Hays
Among the book's contents are poems and fiction (including dream visions and an Oriental tale. Titles like Cleora, or the Misery Attending Unsuitable Connections and Josepha, or pernicious Effects of early Indulgence foreground Hays's didactic...
Intertextuality and Influence Felicia Hemans
Scenes and Hymns of Life includes Prisoners' Evening Service, which imagines the last days of two prisoners awaiting execution during the French Revolution, and affectingly described by Helen Maria Williams .
Duquette, Natasha Aleksiuk. Veiled Intent: Dissenting Women’s Approach to Biblical Interpretation. Pickwick Publications, 2016.


Bernardin de Saint-Pierre published his popular sentimentalnovelPaul et Virginie, a two-generation story involving friendship between two single mothers living in a kind of exile in the idyllic, colonial, tropical Ile de France (now...
April 1789
The Gentleman's Magazine published Anna Seward 's selection of living celebrated Female Poets.
Late 1790
William Holland published a print of Burke running the gauntlet of enemies with whips: women as well as men.
June 1793
An enterprising printer and freemason, John Wharlton Bunney , put out the first number of The Free-Mason's Magazine, or General and Complete Library.
13 July 1793
Charlotte Corday , a Royalist from Normandy, assassinated Marat as he lay in his bath.