Contradicting common perception of them as mere footnotes in Tennyson's career, this book examines the influence of his strong-minded female forebears on the young poet and reveals that the women in Tennyson's family circle were prolific and engaging correspondents. Their letters, preserved in archives in Lincoln and for the most part unpublished, cast a unique light on the Tennyson family's interrelationships and the times in which they lived.
Focusing on the letters and lives of four Tennyson women - the poet's paternal grandmother, Mary Tennyson (1753-1825), her daughters Elizabeth Russell (1776-1865) and Mary Bourne (1777-1864), and her daughter-in-law Frances Tennyson, later Tennyson d'Eyncourt (1787-1878) - this book includes extensive and annotated extracts from the women's letters, linked by narrative passages providing context and continuity. The case studies cover six decades, from the marriage of Mary Turner and George Tennyson in 1775 to the death of George Tennyson in 1835, with brief Afterwords touching on the women's final years.
About the Author
Marion Sherwood is an independent scholar based in the UK. She completed a PhD on Tennyson with the Open University in 2011. Tennyson and the Fabrication of Englishness was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2013. She has also published articles in the Tennyson Research Bulletin and is a member of the Tennyson Society Executive Committee Rosalind Boyce is a retired librarian and indexer. She published Forever Young: Harold Tennyson RN, the Poet's Grandson, a Tennyson Society Occasional Paper in 2013, and has published articles on Lincolnshire local history. She is Assistant Honorary Secretary of the Tennyson Society and Honorary Secretary of its Publications Board.