Charlotte Smith

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CS , poet and novelist of the later eighteenth century, continued her output especially of children's books, into the very early nineteenth century. She wrote her poems for pleasure, her remarkable, now edited letters for relief from the struggles of a difficult life, but her novels (she said) only by necessity.
Blain, Virginia, Patricia Clements, and Isobel Grundy, editors. The Feminist Companion to Literature in English: Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present. Yale University Press; Batsford, 1990.
996
Many of the latter have foreign settings, not for mere exoticism but to further a political critique which takes a global view. All her writing was done at high speed: she found it hard or impossible to make her income cover the unremitting expenses of her large dependent family. A critic has recently pronounced that the best of [her] writings . . . should be recognised as among the greatest works of the period.
Barrell, John. “To Stir up the People”. London Review of Books, No. 2, pp. 17 -19.
19
Stipple engraving by Pierre Condé of Charlotte Smith, from portrait by George Romney, 1792, in the National Portrait Gallery. The engraving appeared as frontispiece to volume 2 of "Elegiac Sonnets", 8th ed., 1797. This is a head-and-shoulders view. She is looking down, wearing a simple, light, gauzy dress, and a high bonnet with a large bow in front over her curling hair. The portrait is surrounded by a decorative swirl design, and underneath her name is written in block letters.
"Charlotte Smith" Retrieved from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:CharlotteSmithElegy.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.

Milestones

4 May 1749
Charlotte Turner (later CS ) was born at King Street, St James's Square, London.
Hilbish, Florence. Charlotte Smith, Poet and Novelist. University of Pennsylvania Press, 1941.
9
10 May 1784
CS , in the King's Bench Prison, arranged the publication of her Elegiac Sonnets, and Other Essays.
The word essays signifies attempts, not essays in prose.
Smith, Charlotte. “Introduction”. The Poems of Charlotte Smith, edited by Stuart Curran, Oxford University Press, 1993, p. xix - xxix.
xxii
Hilbish, Florence. Charlotte Smith, Poet and Novelist. University of Pennsylvania Press, 1941.
103-4
Early June 1784
CS 's first book, Elegiac Sonnets, and Other Essays, was finally published.
Fletcher, Loraine. Charlotte Smith: A Critical Biography. Macmillan, 1998.
65
28 February 1793
CS published her currently best-known novel, The Old Manor House.
Garside, Peter, James Raven, and Rainer Schöwerling, editors. The English Novel 1770-1829. Oxford University Press, 2000.
1: 597
Fletcher, Loraine. Charlotte Smith: A Critical Biography. Macmillan, 1998.
140
Smith, Charlotte. “Introduction”. Emmeline, the Orphan of the Castle, edited by Anne Henry Ehrenpreis, Oxford University Press, 1971.
xxiii
28 October 1806
CS died at Tilford near Farnham in Surrey, perhaps of uterine cancer.
Smith, Charlotte. “Introduction”. Emmeline, the Orphan of the Castle, edited by Anne Henry Ehrenpreis, Oxford University Press, 1971.
xxiv
Fletcher, Loraine. Charlotte Smith: A Critical Biography. Macmillan, 1998.
329-30, 336-7
Early February 1807
CS 's Beachy Head, Fables, and Other Poems appeared, through Joseph Johnson , three months after her death.
Her biographers Hilbish (1941) and Fletcher (1998) both say the title-poem was the last thing she wrote. The history of Beachy Head in Sussex connects it both with sea battles and with suicides.
Smith, Charlotte. Beachy Head. Joseph Johnson, 1807.
title-page
Hilbish, Florence. Charlotte Smith, Poet and Novelist. University of Pennsylvania Press, 1941.
217
Fletcher, Loraine. Charlotte Smith: A Critical Biography. Macmillan, 1998.
334

Biography

Birth and Influences

4 May 1749
Charlotte Turner (later CS ) was born at King Street, St James's Square, London.
Hilbish, Florence. Charlotte Smith, Poet and Novelist. University of Pennsylvania Press, 1941.
9