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.


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
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.
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, p. v - xxviii.
Apart from a short stay in the home of a Huguenot minister during which she perfected her...
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...
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 et al. The Conway Letters. Editor Hutton, Sarah, Clarendon Press.
He was a cousin (not a close one) of the poet Anne Finch 's husband.
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.
Anne Finch
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.
She was a...
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...
Intertextuality and Influence Ruth Rendell
Years ago, the young and inexperienced Wexford had become certain that a swaggering thug named Eric Targo is a psychopathic (but only occasional) strangler. He has remained obsessed with Targo, but without evidence. His younger...


1656: Abraham Cowley published Poems; this volume,...

Writing climate item


Abraham Cowley published Poems; this volume, which included his Pindaric Odes and Miscellanies, confirmed his stature as the leading poet of the day.

1673: Molière's comedy Les Femmes savantes, first...

Writing climate item


Molière 's comedyLes Femmes savantes, first staged the previous year, was published.

27 May 1682: Mary of Modena, wife of the future James...

National or international item

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,...

Building item

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,...

National or international item

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,...

Building item

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...

Writing climate item

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;...

Writing climate item

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 ).

1717: The worthy authors chosen for a miscellany...

Women writers item


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...

Women writers item

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.


Finch, Anne. Free-Thinkers. A Poem in Dialogue. Printed by the booksellers of London and Westminster, 1711.
Finch, Anne. “Introduction”. The Poems of Anne, Countess of Winchilsea, edited by Myra Reynolds, University of Chicago Press, 1903, p. xvii - cxxxiv.
Murry, John Middleton, and Anne Finch. “Introduction”. Poems by Anne, Countess of Winchilsea 1661-1720, Jonathan Cape, 1928, pp. 3-20.
Finch, Anne. “Introduction / Editors’ Note”. The Anne Finch Wellesley Manuscript Poems: A Critical Edition, edited by Barbara McGovern and Charles H. Hinnant, University of Georgia Press, 1998, p. xv - l.
Finch, Anne. Miscellany Poems, on Several Occasions. Printed for John Barber and sold by Benjamin Tooke, William Taylor, and James Round, 1713.
Wordsworth, William, and Anne Finch. Poems and Extracts Chosen by William Wordsworth for an Album presented to Lady Mary Lowther, Christmas 1819. Editor Littledale, Harold, H. Frowde, 1905.
Finch, Anne. The Anne Finch Wellesley Manuscript Poems: A Critical Edition. Editors McGovern, Barbara and Charles H. Hinnant, University of Georgia Press, 1998.
Finch, Anne. The Poems of Anne, Countess of Winchilsea. Editor Reynolds, Myra, University of Chicago Press, 1903.