Today is the 207th birthday of the writer Charlotte Bronte. She was an English novelist and poet, the eldest of the three Brontë sisters who survived into adulthood and whose novels became classics of English literature. The world is a better place because she was in it and still feels the loss that she has left.
NAME: Charlotte Brontë
DATE OF BIRTH: 21-Apr-1816
PLACE OF BIRTH: Thornton, Yorkshire, England
DATE OF DEATH: 31-Mar-1855
PLACE OF DEATH: Haworth, Yorkshire, England
CAUSE OF DEATH: unspecified
REMAINS: Buried, Church of St. Michael and All Angels, Haworth, Yorkshire, England
FATHER: Patrick Brontë (clergyman, b. 17-Mar-1777, d. 7-Jun-1861)
MOTHER: Maria Branwell Brontë (b. 15-Apr-1783, m. 29-Dec-1812, d. 15-Sep-1821 uterine cancer)
SISTER: Maria Brontë (b. Apr-1814, d. 6-Jun-1825 tuberculosis)
SISTER: Elizabeth Brontë (b. 8-Feb-1815, d. 15-Jun-1825 tuberculosis)
BROTHER: Branwell Brontë (poet-drunkard, b. 26-Jun-1817, d. 24-Sep-1848 bronchitis)
SISTER: Emily Brontë (author, b. 30-Jul-1818, d. 19-Dec-1848 tuberculosis)
SISTER: Anne Brontë (author, b. 17-Jan-1820, d. 28-May-1849 tuberculosis)
HUSBAND: Arthur Bell Nicholls (b. 1818, m. 29-Jun-1854, until her death, d. 2-Dec-1906, one child)
HIGH SCHOOL: Clergy Daughters’ School, Cowan Bridge, Lancashire, England
BEST KNOWN FOR: Charlotte Brontë was an English 19th-century writer whose novel ‘Jane Eyre’ is considered a classic of Western literature.
Brontë was born on April 21, 1816, in Thornton, Yorkshire, England. Said to be the most dominant and ambitious of the Brontës, Charlotte was raised in a strict Anglican home by her clergyman father and a religious aunt after her mother and two eldest siblings died. She and her sister Emily attended the Clergy Daughter’s School at Cowan Bridge but were largely educated at home. Though she tried to earn a living as both a governess and a teacher, Brontë missed her sisters and eventually returned home.
A writer all her life, Brontë published her first novel, Jane Eyre, in 1847 under the manly pseudonym Currer Bell. Though controversial in its criticism of society’s treatment of impoverished women, the book was an immediate hit. She followed the success with Shirley in 1848 and Villette in 1853.
The deaths of the Brontë siblings are almost as notable as their literary legacy. Her brother, Branwell, and Emily died in 1848, and Anne died the following year.
In 1854, Charlotte married Arthur Bell Nicholls, but died the following year during her pregnancy, on March 31, 1855, in Haworth, Yorkshire, England. The first novel she ever wrote, The Professor, was published posthumously in 1857.
Author of books:
Jane Eyre (1847, novel)
Shirley (1849, novel)
Villette (1853, novel)
The Professor (1857, novel, posthumous)