Browning, Robert, 1812-1889

Alternative names
Birth 1812-05-07
Death 1889-12-12
Greek, Ancient (to 1453), English

Biographical notes:

Robert Browning was a British poet. Born on May 7, 1812, Browning wrote his first major work,"Pauline: a fragment of a confession" at the age of twenty. He married Elizabeth Barrett in 1826 and with her encouragement went on to become one of the major Victorian poets.

From the description of Robert Browning collection of papers, [1835?]-1933 bulk ([1835?]-1889). (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 122615581

Browning was an English poet.

From the description of Letters to the Schlesinger family, 1872-1889. (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 82797960

From the description of Letters, 1880-1886. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 81598758

From the guide to the Robert Browning letters to the Schlesinger family, 1872-1889., (Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University)

Browning was a British Victorian poet. Furnivall was an English literary scholar.

From the description of [Letter] 1885 Dec. 8, 19. Warwick Crescent, W., [London to] Furnivall / Robert Browning. (Smith College). WorldCat record id: 175300853

Nineteenth-century English poet.

From the description of Robert Browning. Letters, 1868-1887. (Cornell University Library). WorldCat record id: 63936808

English poet.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : Llangollen, N. Wales, to Edmund Evans, 1886 Aug. 21. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270623088

From the description of Autograph letter signed : Val d'Aosta, Italy, to [Richard] Grant White, 1883 Sept. 18. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270870437

From the description of Autograph letter signed : 19 Warwick Crescent, Upper Westbourne Terrace, W., [London], to Arthur Sullivan, 1864 July 7. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270125320

From the description of Autograph poem and letter : London, [18]70 Apr. 27. (Rosenbach Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 86165797

From the description of AL (third person) : St. Moritz, to Charles W. Mayne, [1887 June 24?]. (Rosenbach Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 122591764

From the description of Autograph letter signed : [London] to Mrs. Story, [1869]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270623013

From the description of Autograph letter signed : [London], to John A. Jennings, 1877 Nov. 23. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270623005

From the description of Autograph letter signed : London, to Messrs. James Osgood & Co., [n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270623142

From the description of Autograph letter signed : [London], to an unnamed correspondent, 1887 May 6. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270623016

From the description of Autograph letters signed (8) : London, to [Jules] Lemaître, 1863 Oct. 12-1866 Apr. 23. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270876412

From the description of Letter, 1889 August 8, London, to Mrs. Howe. (Boston Athenaeum). WorldCat record id: 15174079

Robert Browning (1812-1889), poet and dramatist. For full details of his life and work, see the Dictionary of National Biography

From the guide to the Ten holograph poems, by Robert Browning, ca. 1840-1889, (GB 206 Leeds University Library)

Dr. Derrick T. Vail purchased Robert Browning's desk from E.P. Dutton & Company on February 20, 1915 for his wife, Dellah Harris Vail. Mrs. Vail bequeathed the desk to Smith College in memory of her daughter, Charlotte Farrell Vail, Class of 1923, who died at Smith College on March 11, 1923. The desk was received by the College after Mrs. Vail's death on December 7, 1935.

From the description of [Portable writing desk], ca. 1850. (Smith College). WorldCat record id: 54036223


From the description of Robert Browning papers, 1810-1904. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 125424824

Epithet: poet

British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue : Person : Description : ark:/81055/vdc_100000001219.0x0001fe

Robert Browning, English Victorian poet and playwright.

From the description of Robert Browning manuscript material : 170 items, 1835-1889. (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 77500279

From the guide to the Robert Browning manuscript material : 171 items, 1835-1889, (The New York Public Library. Carl H. Pforzheimer Collection of Shelley and His Circle.)

Robert Browning, one of the most influential Victorian poets, was born into an Evangelical family in Camberwell in South London. Educated largely at home, Browning as a young man read and traveled widely. His father subsidized his first, relatively unsuccessful publications, including several plays and the much-ridiculed long poem Sordello (1840).

In 1845 he met the more successful and popular poet Elizabeth Barrett (1806-1861); they eloped in September, 1846 and moved to Italy, where they spent the next fifteen years, mainly in Florence and Asolo. Browning published Men and Women, the collection of dramatic monologues that are now among his best-known works, in 1855. Following his wife's death in Florence in 1861, Browning returned to London and became a member of London's literary circles. Dramatis Personae appeared in 1864. Four years later, The Ring and the Book, Browning's longest and most ambitious work, was published, and was both very popular and critically acclaimed.

In his later years, Browning traveled often, returning to Italy for several visits with his son "Pen" (Robert Wiedemann Barrett Browning). "Browning Societies," reading groups that met to discuss and promote Browning's works and philosophy, were founded throughout England and the United States during the 1880s. Robert Browning died at his son's home, Ca' Rezzonico in Venice, on December 12, 1889.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning, popular Victorian poet, was born in England to prosperous landowning parents and spent most of her childhood and adolescence at Hope End, the family's 500-acre estate in Herfordshire. Educated at home, Barrett began writing poetry when very young and continued to write despite frequent ill-health, publishing three collections in the 1830s as well as popular Abolitionist poems, including The Runaway Slave at Pilgrim's Point .

After she moved with her family to London in 1838, Elizabeth was introduced to several literary figures, including Mary Russell Mitford, who became a close friend and mentor. Her health worsened, however, and by 1841 she was mostly confined to her upstairs room at 50 Wimpole Street. Her 1842 poem The Cry of the Children raised support for one of the first child labor laws; her collection of Poems, which appeared two years later, was a great popular and critical success.

It was also the occasion of her meeting Robert Browning, who sent her an admiring letter; the two met in 1845, and carried on a year-long courtship before eloping in September, 1846. During this time, she wrote the now-famous Sonnets from the Portuguese . On hearing of her marriage, her father disinherited her, and the two never spoke again. The Brownings moved to Italy shortly after their honeymoon, settling in Florence. There, Elizabeth's health improved, and in 1849 she gave birth to the couple's only child, Robert Wiedemann Barrett Browning ("Pen").

Browning continued to write and to publish. In addition to several collections of poems, in 1851 she published Casa Guidi Windows, a longer poem which expressed her passionate support for the Italian Risorgimento. Aurora Leigh, her "novel-poem" narrating the emotional and intellectual development of a woman poet, was published in 1856. It was extremely popular; nineteen editions appeared before 1885, and it was admired by many contenporaries, including George Eliot, Emily Dickinson, and Susan B. Anthony, for its outspokenness on the condition of women and the sexual "double standard."

Elizabeth's health failed rapidly after 1857. Her last publication, Poems Before Congress (1860), again exrpressed her support for the Italian revolutionaries and criticized the British for not coming to their aid. It was not well received in England. Elizabeth Barrett Browning died in Casa Guidi, Florence, on June 29, 1861. Her posthumous Last Poems were published by Robert Browning in 1862.

From the guide to the Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barrett Browning collection, 1835-1906, 1850-1889, (Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library)


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