Literature

Discovering ‘Miss Thackeray’

Writing a bookplate for a book in the study recently, I came across a Victorian woman writer who was new to me. Lady Anne Isabella Thackeray Ritchie (1837 -1919) was the elder daughter of William Makepeace Thackeray. Known as Annie, she grew...

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My life with Lily – Mrs Gaskell, Cheshire, Manchester and me

I was born in Sale, which was then in Cheshire and is now in Greater Manchester. My socially aspirant family would get annoyed with me when, for convenience's sake, I would introduce myself to strangers as being from Manchester: ' no dear,...

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Tracking down Mr Aide

On March 28 1862. Elizabeth Gaskell writes a letter to George Smith, her publisher: It seems to me that you must have been thinking me very ungrateful inasmuch as all this time I have never thanked you for Mr Aide's book. But...

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The Manchester Woman – Mrs G Linnaeus Banks

Before I was sidetracked by Richmal Crompton, I had wanted to feature the writer of The Manchester Man in our occasional series about other women writers of Manchester. And to celebrate the 200th anniversary of her birth on 25 March 1821, lets...

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Literary detectives and Cranford

Over the last few months, a team of our lovely volunteers has been cataloguing all the books we have in the House, and particularly those in William's study. Now this rather huge job is done, they have been identifying the gaps in...

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