Anne Finch

Standard Name: Finch, Anne
Birth Name: Anne Kingsmill
Married Name: Anne Finch
Titled: Anne Finch, Countess of Winchilsea
Pseudonym: Ardelia
Pseudonym: Areta
Pseudonym: a Lady
Used Form: Anne Finch, Lady Winchilsea
AF is an important poet of the Restoration and early eighteenth century—highly versatile and original. She wrote in many genres: fables (a high proportion of her poems, giving scope to her humour and complexity), closet drama, elegies, political, religious, personal, and proto-feminist pieces, and a notable pindaric ode which was her single most famous publication. She sometimes wrote satire, though she was sensitive to its potential for harm. She both printed a selection of her poems and carefully preserved her oeuvre in handsome manuscript form.
Low resolution scan of a miniature portrait of Anne Finch by Peter Cross, painted during the 1690s. She wears a blue dress with fairly low, lace-edged neckline. Her hair is in curls above her forehead while some locks drape her shoulder on the right.
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Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Education Elizabeth Singer Rowe
Besides this, Henry Thynne , son of Viscount Weymouth of Longleat House (nephew by marriage of Anne Finch , and father of the future Lady Hertford ), taught ESR French and Italian. She read very...
Education Anna Seward
Anna's education was largely overseen by her parents. Before she was three she could recite passages from Milton 's L'Allegro and by nine the first three books of Paradise Lost.
Ashmun, Margaret. The Singing Swan. Yale University Press; H. Milford, Oxford University Press, 1931.
She was later...
Education Delarivier Manley
DM must have read widely in French fiction, which she disparaged as books of chivalry and romances.
Manley, Delarivier. “Introduction”. New Atalantis, edited by Ros Ballaster, Pickering and Chatto, 1991, p. v - xxviii.
Apart from a short stay in the home of a Huguenot minister during which she perfected her...
Family and Intimate relationships Elizabeth Singer Rowe
They were staying in Hampstead, then near but not part of London, hoping to benefit his health. He was buried in the Rowe family vault in Bunhill Fields dissenting burial ground.
Stecher, Henry F. Elizabeth Singer Rowe, the Poetess of Frome: A Study in Eighteenth-Century English Pietism. Herbert Lang, 1973.
Anne Finch
Family and Intimate relationships Anne Conway
AC never knew her father, Sir Heneage Finch , who had been Speaker of the House of Commons.
Conway, Anne, Henry More, and Marjorie Hope Nicolson. The Conway Letters. Hutton, SarahEditor , Clarendon Press, 1992.
He was a cousin (not a close one) of the poet Anne Finch 's husband.
Friends, Associates Sarah Dixon
There is some evidence to suggest that SD may have known Anne Finch : may have been, in fact, one of the circle of female poets of Kent whom Finch celebrated in verse; she and...
Friends, Associates Elizabeth Elstob
An early friendship that EE regarded as important was that with Mary Randolph of Canterbury. Randolph was in the unusual position of having a mother (who apparently shared the same name) who was very...
Friends, Associates Elizabeth Singer Rowe
ESR enjoyed important friendships from around the age of twenty with Anne Finch, Lady Winchilsea , and Lady Hertford . Finch was twelve years older than ESR , and Hertford twenty-five years younger. They each...
Friends, Associates Alexander Pope
Pope's relationships with women, particularly women who wrote, tended to be complicated and turbulent. They have been ably studied by scholar Valerie Rumbold . Contrary to rumour, he apparently liked and respected Anne Finch ...
Friends, Associates Ephelia
If Ephelia's poems of compliment are taken to imply personal friendship, she may have been a friend of Aphra Behn , whom she praises warmly and with polite humility about her own abilities in her...
Friends, Associates Frances Seymour, Countess of Hertford
The young Frances Thynne grew up in a literary ambience. Her early friends included Frances Worsley, later Lady Carteret (who apparently patronised women writers later, when her husband was Viceroy of Ireland). Family friends from...
Friends, Associates Anne Killigrew
Evidence about AK 's friends and contacts is sketchy, but she presumably knew well her fellow maids of honour Anne Kingsmill and Sarah Jennings , who later became, respectively, a distinguished poet and a powerful...
Friends, Associates Jonathan Swift
Swift helped and befriended a number of women writers. He was a patron of Mary Barber , Constantia Grierson , an unidentified Mrs Sican , Mary Davys , and Laetitia Pilkington , a colleague of...
Friends, Associates Elizabeth Thomas
ET was personally acquainted with many cultivated women, for instance Sarah Hoadly (a painter who had trained with Mary Beale ), and her cousin Anne Osborne (the Clemena of her poetry).
Mills, Rebecca. "Thanks for that Elegant Defense": Polemical Prose and Poetry by Women in the Early Eighteenth Century. Oxford University, 2000.
She was a...
Intertextuality and Influence Mary Tighe
MT mentions her anguish
Tighe, Mary. Keats and Mary Tighe. Weller, Earle VonardEditor , Kraus Reprint Corporation, 1966.
and says that if she could resign herself to parting with her friends, then the bitterness of death were past
Tighe, Mary. Keats and Mary Tighe. Weller, Earle VonardEditor , Kraus Reprint Corporation, 1966.
—citing the words of Lady Rachel Russell 's husband...


Abraham Cowley published Poems; this volume, which included his Pindaric Odes and Miscellanies, confirmed his stature as the leading poet of the day.
Molière 's comedyLes Femmes savantes, first staged the previous year, was published.
27 May 1682
Mary of Modena , wife of the future James II , arrived in England.
April 1684
Mr and Mrs Priest's school at Gorges House, Chelsea, put on a private revival of the court masque Venus and Adonis, by John Blow (to a libretto perhaps by the future Anne Finch ).
27 July 1689
John Graham of Claverhouse, Viscount Dundee , led a force of Scottish Highlanders loyal to James II against William ite English soldiers in the pass of Killiecrankie.
27 November 1703
The Great Storm hit much of Southern England, leaving many houses demolish'd and people kill'd.
2 May 1709
Poetical Miscellanies. The Sixth Part was published, including Pope 's Pastorals and poems by Anne Finch (which are placed between work by Pope and Swift ).
December 1713
Richard Steele published Poetical Miscellanies; it included poems by Pope , Anne Finch , and himself (including praise of the unnamed and only recently identified young Elizabeth Tollet ).
The worthy authors chosen for a miscellany entitled The Agreeable Variety by its female editor included Behn , Philips , Chudleigh , and Finch .
Christmas 1819
William Wordsworth presented Lady Mary Lowther with a little manuscript volume of poems: those by women were mostly copied from the pages of Poems by Eminent Ladies.