Gaskell, Elizabeth (Cleghorn)

Gaskell, Elizabeth (Cleghorn)

biographical name


Elizabeth Gaskell, chalk drawing by George Richmond, 1851; in the National Portrait Gallery, London—Courtesy of The National Portrait Gallery, London

(born Sept. 29, 1810, Chelsea, London, Eng.—died Nov. 12, 1865, near Alton, Hampshire) British writer. The daughter of a Unitarian minister, Gaskell also married a Unitarian minister and began writing in middle age. Cranford (1853), her most popular novel, and the unfinished Wives and Daughters (1864–66), perhaps her best, are about the lives of country villagers. Mary Barton (1848), Ruth (1853), and North and South (1855) examine social problems of the urban working class. In 1857 she wrote the first biography of her friend Charlotte Brontë (see Brontë sisters).


Gaskell, Elizabeth (Cleghorn) orig. Elizabeth Cleghorn Stevenson known as Mrs. Gaskell

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