People

Elizabeth Gaskell and John Forster: Unitarians, friends and correspondents

London 1849. It is the evening of Saturday, 12 May, and after a visit packed full with social engagements, Elizabeth Gaskell accompanied by her cousin Mary Holland, will dress and go to dine with Charles Dickens at Devonshire Terrace. He is hosting...

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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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It’s 1851 – Cranford year for Gaskell fans!

On 13 December 1851. Our Society at Cranford is published in Charles Dickens magazine Household Words. The story begins the series which will later be collected as Cranford. Find out more in our new exhibition! The Gaskell family has been living at...

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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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The Time Line Series – the year is 1848!

On 18 October, Mary Barton is published in two volumes to critical acclaim. Gaskell receives £100 for the copyright, which is about worth around £12,000 today, though she does receive an additional £100 on the publication of the second edition of the...

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