Felicia Hemans

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Standard Name: Hemans, Felicia
Birth Name: Felicia Dorothea Browne
Married Name: Felicia Dorothea Hemans
Pseudonym: F. H.
Pseudonym: A Lady
A major Romantic poet and the most popular woman poet (or poetess as she and others expressed it) in English during the nineteenth century, FH published nineteen volumes of verse and two dramas. While most of her work was poetry—songs, lyric poetry, dramatic lyrics (arguably dramatic monologues), narrative poetry, and verse drama—she also published literary criticism, and some of her private letters survive. After her death she became in the mid-Victorian period a household name and a staple for memorizing as the popular educational practice at home and in the colonies. Her evocation of the domestic affections and the values associated with English national valour and imperial strength resonated strongly with her contemporaries, but in the late Victorian period her work fell out of favour. Recently interest has revived in her as a female voice within Romanticism, and as a vehicle for bourgeois, domestic, and British hegemony that nevertheless also critiques the very values and ideals for which her work became a byword. Recognition of her as a major poetic voice has accompanied a substantial shift in the understanding of British Romanticism.

Connections

Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
death Maria Jane Jewsbury
The news of MJJ 's death took some time to reach England; Felicia Hemans did not hear of it until the following summer. Shocked by the news, Hemans wrote that MJJ was taken away in...
Dedications Maria Jane Jewsbury
MJJ published her second volume of poetry, Lays of Leisure Hours, dedicated to Felicia Hemansin remembrance of the summer passed in her society.
Jewsbury, Maria Jane. Lays of Leisure Hours. J. Hatchard.
Blain, Virginia et al., editors. The Feminist Companion to Literature in English: Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present. Yale University Press; Batsford.
Education Elizabeth Gaskell
The school moved to Avonbank House in Stratford upon Avon, a Tudor mansion that had once belonged to a cousin of Shakespeare's, in May 1824. Here Elizabeth learned English, history, geography and music. Women...
Education Dora Greenwell
Thereafter, she taught herself, studying philosophy, Latin, German, Italian, French, political economy, and theology.
“Dictionary of Literary Biography online”. Gale Databases: Literature Resource Center-LRC.
199
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray et al., editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. http://www.oxforddnb.com/.
Dorling, William. Memoirs of Dora Greenwell. James Clarke.
73
She was very well read and took a particular interest in the writings of Caroline Norton , Felicia Hemans
Education Annie S. Swan
ASS says her first conscious memory was of telling a quite deliberate lie at the age of five, and basely tempt[ing] two infant brothers to share my crime.
Swan, Annie S. My Life. Ivor Nicholson and Watson.
14
Her mother took care to cultivate...
Education Winifred Peck
It was probably Mary A. Marzials ' anthology Gems of English Poetry which made poetry the only lesson the Knoxes disliked. Winifred felt that Hemans 's boy on the burning deck cut a poor figure...
Education Mary Linskill
ML was taught to read by her aunt Hannah Tireman , a professional upholsterer.
Stamp, Cordelia. Mary Linskill. Caedmon of Whitby.
3
She said later that she began to read both prose and poetry with avidity at an early age.
Bainton, George, editor. The Art of Authorship. J. Clarke.
97
Her...
Education Emma Marshall
At a very early age Emma Martin could recite See'st thou my home is where yon woods are waving by Felicia Hemans .
Marshall, Beatrice. Emma Marshall. Seeley.
8
After leaving school she continued to study music with Dr Zacariah or Zechariah Buck
Education Jean Rhys
At a very young age, JR imagined that God was a book. She was so slow to read that her parents were concerned, but then suddenly found herself able to read even the longer words...
Family and Intimate relationships Mary Anne Jevons
Mary Anne was very close to her father, William Roscoe , the historian, writer, patron of the arts, abolitionist and reformer. William began his professional career as a barrister, but retired early. Soon afterwards he...
Family and Intimate relationships Frances Power Cobbe
Lloyd was the daughter of the squire of Rhagatt in Merionethshire, Wales; a maiden aunt in the family had been a friend of the Ladies of Llangollen (Eleanor Butler and Sarah Ponsonby )...
Family and Intimate relationships Maria Jane Jewsbury
Her sister Geraldine was her bridesmaid and Felicia Hemans ' brother-in-law, the Rev. H. Hughes , performed the ceremony, during which MJJ is reported to have uttered the terrible obey, with edifying distinctness.
Gillett, Eric, and Maria Jane Jewsbury. “Maria Jane Jewsbury: A Memoir”. Maria Jane Jewsbury: Occasional Papers, Oxford University Press, p. xiii - lxvii.
lix
Espinasse, Francis, and Francis Espinasse. “Maria Jane Jewsbury”. Lancashire Worthies: Second Series, Simpkin, Marshall; John Heywood, pp. 323-39.
330
Howe, Susanne. Geraldine Jewsbury: Her Life and Errors. George Allen and Unwin.
18
Fictionalization Lady Arbella Stuart
LAS has been much written about, though more for her life than her authorship. In 1611 The Second Maiden's Tragedy, probably by Thomas Middleton , made her into the Lady, James I into...
Fictionalization Lady Anne Clifford
The Memorial Pillar, a poem by Felicia Hemans , meditates on the monument which LAC set up to record her final parting from her mother.
Wilson, Frances. “The Italy of Human Beings”. London Review of Books, pp. 26-7.
27
Friends, Associates Mary Howitt
In Nottingham MH met L. E. L. and perhaps Elizabeth Fry . She was visited by Mary and Dora Wordsworth (wife and daughter of the poet), and later she and her husband stayed with the...

Timeline

1-3 August 1798: In the Battle of the Nile (also known as...

National or international item

1-3 August 1798

In the Battle of the Nile (also known as the Battle of Aboukir (or Abu Qir) Bay), the British fleet under Nelson attacked and in large part destroyed the fleet of revolutionary France.
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray et al., editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. http://www.oxforddnb.com/.
under Nelson

20 December 1808-13 January 1809: British forces under Sir John Moore (and...

National or international item

20 December 1808-13 January 1809

British forces under Sir John Moore (and the women accompanying them) suffered fearful hardship in retreating through the mountains towards Corunna in north-west Spain.

6 November 1817: Princess Charlotte died at 2.30 a.m. after...

National or international item

6 November 1817

Princess Charlotte died at 2.30 a.m. after delivering a stillborn son. Poor clinical judgement was to blame; intense national mourning and controversy followed.

1830: Nearly a decade after Felicia Hemans's Dartmoor,...

Women writers item

1830

Nearly a decade after Felicia Hemans 's Dartmoor, a poem, Sophie Dixon published at Plymouth two journals, in prose and verse, of excursions around the moor.

22 March 1832: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe died at Weimar...

Writing climate item

22 March 1832

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe died at Weimar in Germany in his early eighties.
Chisholm, Hugh, editor. Encyclopaedia Britannica. Cambridge University Press.

1861: A company in Salem, Massachusetts, issued...

Writing climate item

1861

A company in Salem, Massachusetts, issued what seems to be the earliest version of a game called Authors, whose object was to collect sets of cards bearing the names of writers and the...

1864: Famous Girls who have become Illustrious...

Writing climate item

1864

Famous Girls who have become Illustrious Women: Forming Models for Imitation by the Young Women of England, a very popular book of biographical sketches by John M. Darton , was published.

April 1879: James Murray—editor since 1 March of what...

Writing climate item

April 1879

James Murray —editor since 1 March of what was to become the Oxford English Dictionary—issued an Appeal for readers to supply illustrative quotations.

1886: Eva Hope's Queens of Literature of the Victorian...

Women writers item

1886

Eva Hope 's Queens of Literature of the Victorian Era singled out Mary Somerville , Harriet Martineau , Elizabeth Barrett Browning , Charlotte Brontë , George Eliot , and Felicia Hemans .

1886: Eva Hope's Queens of Literature of the Victorian...

Women writers item

1886

Eva Hope 's Queens of Literature of the Victorian Era singled out Mary Somerville , Harriet Martineau , Elizabeth Barrett Browning , Charlotte Brontë , George Eliot , and Felicia Hemans .

10 September 2003: Guardian Unlimited Books named as Site of...

Writing climate item

10 September 2003

Guardian Unlimited Books named as Site of the Week a website entitled Poetry Landmarks of Britain: a map of poetic assocations plotted on an interactive map of Britain, searchable by region or category.

Texts

Hemans, Felicia. Dartmoor. J. Brettell, 1821.
Hemans, Felicia. Early Blossoms. T. Allman, 1840.
Hemans, Felicia. England and Spain. T. Cadell and W. Davies, 1808.
Sigourney, Lydia Howard, and Felicia Hemans. “Essay on the Genius of Mrs. Hemans”. The Works of Mrs. Hemans, Lea and Blanchard, 1840, p. 1: vii - xxiv.
Hemans, Felicia. Felicia Hemans: Selected Poems, Letters, Reception Materials. Editor Wolfson, Susan J., Princeton University Press, 2000.
Hemans, Felicia. Felicia Hemans: Selected Poems, Prose, and Letters. Editor Kelly, Gary, Broadview, 2002.
Reiman, Donald H., and Felicia Hemans. “Introduction”. Records of Woman, Garland Publishing, 1978, p. v - xi.
Hemans, Felicia. “Introduction”. Records of Woman, edited by Paula R. Feldman, University Press of Kentucky, 1999, p. xi - xxxiii.
Hemans, Felicia. “Introduction”. The Siege of Valencia, edited by Susan J. Wolfson and Elizabeth Fay, Broadview, 2002, pp. 7-33.
Hemans, Felicia. “Introduction and Editorial Materials”. Felicia Hemans: Selected Poems, Letters, Reception Materials, edited by Susan J. Wolfson, Princeton University Press, 2000, p. xiii - xxix; various pages.
Hemans, Felicia. “Introduction and Editorial Materials”. Felicia Hemans: Selected Poems, Prose, and Letters, edited by Gary Kelly, Broadview, 2002, pp. 12 - 89; various pages.
Hughes, Harriet Browne Owen, and Felicia Hemans. “Memoir of Mrs. Hemans”. The Works of Mrs. Hemans, W. Blackwood, 1839, pp. 1-315.
Hemans, Felicia. Modern Greece. John Murray, 1817.
Hemans, Felicia. National Lyrics, and Songs for Music. W. Curry, Jun., 1834.
Hemans, Felicia. Poems. T. Cadell and W. Davies, 1808.
Hemans, Felicia. Poetical Remains of the Late Mrs. Hemans. W. Blackwood and Sons; T. Cadell, 1836.
Hemans, Felicia. Records of Woman. W. Blackwood, 1828.
Hemans, Felicia. Records of Woman. Editor Feldman, Paula R., University Press of Kentucky, 1999.
Hemans, Felicia. Scenes and Hymns of Life. W. Blackwood, 1834.
Hemans, Felicia. Songs of the Affections. W. Blackwood, 1830.
Hemans, Felicia, and Donald H. Reiman. Songs of the Affections. Garland, 1978.
Hemans, Felicia. Tales and Historic Scenes, in Verse. John Murray, 1819.
Hemans, Felicia. Tales and Historic Scenes, in Verse. John Murray, 1824.
Hemans, Felicia. The Domestic Affections and Other Poems. T. Cadell and W. Davies, 1812.
Hemans, Felicia. The Forest Sanctuary. John Murray, 1825.