Anna Laetitia Barbauld quotes

Anna Laetitia Barbauld photo
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Anna Laetitia Barbauld

Birthdate: 20. June 1743
Date of death: 9. March 1825

Anna Laetitia Barbauld was a prominent English poet, essayist, literary critic, editor, and author of children's literature.

A "woman of letters" who published in multiple genres, Barbauld had a successful writing career at a time when women rarely were professional writers. She was a noted teacher at the Palgrave Academy and an innovative writer of works for children; her primers provided a model for pedagogy for more than a century. Her essays demonstrated that it was possible for a woman to be publicly engaged in politics, and other women authors such as Elizabeth Benger emulated her. Barbauld's literary career spanned numerous periods in British literary history: her work promoted the values of both the Enlightenment and Sensibility, and her poetry made a founding contribution to the development of British Romanticism. Barbauld was also a literary critic and her anthology of eighteenth-century British novels helped establish the canon as known today.

Barbauld's career as a poet ended abruptly in 1812 with the publication of Eighteen Hundred and Eleven, which criticised Britain's participation in the Napoleonic Wars. She was shocked by the vicious reviews it received and published nothing else in her lifetime. Her reputation was further damaged when many of the Romantic poets she had inspired in the heyday of the French Revolution turned against her in their later, more conservative years. Barbauld was remembered only as a pedantic children's writer in the nineteenth century, and largely forgotten in the twentieth, but the rise of feminist literary criticism in the 1980s renewed interest in her works and restored her place in literary history.

Works

The Mouse's Petition
Anna Laetitia Barbauld
Hymns in Prose for Children
Anna Laetitia Barbauld
Life
Anna Laetitia Barbauld

Quotes Anna Laetitia Barbauld

„This dead of midnight is the noon of thought,
And Wisdom mounts her zenith with the stars.“

—  Anna Laetitia Barbauld

A Summer's Evening Meditation.
Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919)

„It is to hope, though hope were lost.“

—  Anna Laetitia Barbauld

Come here, Fond Youth. Compare: "Who against hope believed in hope", Romans iv, 18; "Hope against hope, and ask till ye receive", James Montgomery, The World before the Flood.
Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919)

„Come calm content serene and sweet,
O gently guide my pilgrim feet
To find thy hermit cell.“

—  Anna Laetitia Barbauld

Reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 161.

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„So fades a summer cloud away;
So sinks the gale when storms are o’er;
So gently shuts the eye of day;
So dies a wave along the shore.“

—  Anna Laetitia Barbauld

The Death of the Virtuous. Compare: "The daisie, or els the eye of the day", Geoffrey Chaucer, Prologue of the Legend of Good Women, line 183.
Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919)

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