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Charlotte Brontë and Her Circle   By: (1857-1926)

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CHARLOTTE BRONTE AND HER CIRCLE

BY CLEMENT K. SHORTER

LONDON

HODDER AND STOUGHTON

27 PATERNOSTER ROW

1896

[Picture: CHARLOTTE BRONTE]

PREFACE

It is claimed for the following book of some five hundred pages that the larger part of it is an addition of entirely new material to the romantic story of the Brontes. For this result, but very small credit is due to me; and my very hearty acknowledgments must be made, in the first place, to the Rev. Arthur Bell Nicholls, for whose generous surrender of personal inclination I must ever be grateful. It has been with extreme unwillingness that Mr. Nicholls has broken the silence of forty years, and he would not even now have consented to the publication of certain letters concerning his marriage, had he not been aware that these letters were already privately printed and in the hands of not less than eight or ten people. To Miss Ellen Nussey of Gomersall, I have also to render thanks for having placed the many letters in her possession at my disposal, and for having furnished a great deal of interesting information. Without the letters from Charlotte Bronte to Mr. W. S. Williams, which were kindly lent to me by his son and daughter, Mr. and Mrs. Thornton Williams, my book would have been the poorer. Sir Wemyss Reid, Mr. J. J. Stead, of Heckmondwike, Mr. Butler Wood, of Bradford, Mr. W. W. Yates, of Dewsbury, Mr. Erskine Stuart, Mr. Buxton Forman, and Mr. Thomas J. Wise are among the many Bronte specialists who have helped me with advice or with the loan of material. Mr. Wise, in particular, has lent me many valuable manuscripts. Finally, I have to thank my friend Dr. Robertson Nicoll for the kindly pressure which has practically compelled me to prepare this little volume amid a multitude of journalistic duties.

CLEMENT K. SHORTER. 198 STRAND, LONDON, September 1 st , 1896.

CONTENTS

PRELIMINARY CHAPTER I PATRICK BRONTE AND MARIA HIS WIFE CHAPTER II CHILDHOOD CHAPTER III SCHOOL AND GOVERNESS LIFE CHAPTER IV PENSIONNAT HEGER, BRUSSELS CHAPTER V PATRICK BRANWELL BRONTE CHAPTER VI EMILY JANE BRONTE CHAPTER VII ANNE BRONTE CHAPTER VIII ELLEN NUSSEY CHAPTER IX MARY TAYLOR CHAPTER X MARGARET WOOLER CHAPTER XI THE CURATES AT HAWORTH CHAPTER XII CHARLOTTE BRONTE'S LOVERS CHAPTER XIII LITERARY AMBITIONS CHAPTER XIV WILLIAM SMITH WILLIAMS CHAPTER XV WILLIAM MAKEPEACE THACKERAY CHAPTER XVI LITERARY FRIENDSHIPS CHAPTER XVII ARTHUR BELL NICHOLLS

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

CHARLOTTE BRONTE Frontispiece PATRICK BRANWELL BRONTE facing page 120 FACSIMILE OF PAGE OF EMILY BRONTE'S DIARY facing page 146 FACSIMILE OF TWO PAGES OF EMILY BRONTE'S DIARY facing page 154 ANNE BRONTE facing page 182 MISS ELLEN NUSSEY AS A SCHOOLGIRL ) MISS ELLEN NUSSEY TO DAY ) facing page 207 THE REV. ARTHUR BELL NICHOLLS facing page 467

A BRONTE CHRONOLOGY

Patrick Bronte born 17 March 1777 Maria Bronte born 1783 Patrick leaves Ireland for Cambridge 1802 Degree of A.B. 1806 Curacy at Wetherfield , Essex 1806 ,, Dewsbury Yorks 1809 ,, Hartshead cum Clifton 1811 Publishes ' Cottage Poems ' ( Halifax ) 1811 Married to Maria Branwell 18 Dec. 1812 First Child , Maria , born 1813 Publishes ' The Rural Minstrel ' 1813 Elizabeth born 1814 Publishes ' The Cottage in the Wood ' 1815 Curacy at Thornton 1816 Charlotte Bronte born at Thornton 21 April 1816 Patrick Branwell Bronte born 1817 Emily Jane Bronte born 1818 ' The Maid of Killarney ' published 1818 Anne Bronte born 1819 Removal to Incumbency of Haworth February 1820 Mrs... Continue reading book >>




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