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Marguerite Agnes Power

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Published : 12 Articles
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Date of Birth : N/A
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Power, Marguerite A. I Miss Power I, 1815?–1867, writer. Contributed to Book of Beauty and Keepsake during years that the two annuals were edited by her aunt Lady Blessington; edited Keepsake, 1851–57. Contributed to Illus. London News, Once a Week, and other periodicals. Wrote memoir of Lady Blessington; five novels; a narrative poem in blank verse; Arabian Days and Nights, 1863, an account of a winter's residence in Egypt.


      Dickens came to know Miss Power during the years that she was living with Lady Blessington at Gore House – then the brilliant resort of the literary and the titled. His letters show his affection for her and his solicitude for her when, in later years, she was living in comparative poverty and earning her living by writing. He had high admiration for her self-reliance and perseverance and did all he could to help her. In Oct. 1857, he wrote to Lord Brougham to ask financial aid for her (Johnson, Charles Dickens, II, 912); later in the same year he joined with Thackeray and Forster in raising for her a purse of £200 by private subscription from the friends of Gore House days (to Thackeray, Dec. 4, 1857; Thackeray, Letters, IV, 61). During her editorship of the Keepsake, Dickens contributed a story ("To Be Read at Dusk") to the annual (1852); he aided her in securing a publisher for Arabian Days and Nights, for which book he suggested the title. In the introductory chapter to the book, Miss Power referred to the many obligations she owed to Dickens. Earlier, she had dedicated to him her novel The Forsters "as a humble tribute of profound admiration and most sincere regard."
      In a letter to Miss Power, Dec. 15, 1856, Dickens referred to a story that she had submitted to H.W. as "exceedingly pretty"; later letters contain commendatory references to some of her A.Y.R.contributions.
                                         D.N.B.

Author: Anne Lohrli; © University of Toronto Press, 1971 

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

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