Brontë sisters


Brontë sisters

Family of English writers. The daughters of an Anglican clergyman, they were brought up in Haworth on the Yorkshire moors. Their mother died early. Charlotte Brontë (April 21, 1816–March 31, 1855) attended the Clergy Daughter's School with her sister Emily and subsequently taught school and served as a governess. She and Emily made an unsuccessful attempt to open a school. Her novel Jane Eyre (1847), an immediate success, was a powerful narrative of a woman in conflict with her natural desires and social situation that gave a new truthfulness to Victorian fiction. It was followed by the novels Shirley (1849) and Villette (1853). In 1854 she married her father's curate, and she died soon after at age 38. Emily (Jane) Brontë (July 30, 1818–Dec. 19, 1848) was perhaps the greatest writer of the three. Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell (1846), published jointly by the sisters (who assumed pseudonyms to avoid the special treatment that they believed reviewers accorded to women), contained 21 of her poems. Many critics believe that her verse alone reveals poetic genius. Her one novel, Wuthering Heights (1847), is a highly imaginative story of passion and hatred set on the Yorkshire moors. Though not a success when published, it later came to be considered one of the finest novels in English. Soon after its publication, her health began to fail, and she died of tuberculosis at 30. Anne Brontë (Jan. 17, 1820–May 28, 1849) contributed 21 poems to Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell; she wrote two novels, Agnes Grey (1847) and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1848). Anne died of tuberculosis at 29.

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