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Matilda Barbara Betham Edwards

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Published : 1 Article
Pen Names : None
Date of Birth : 4/3/1836
Death : 4/1/1919
Views : 896

Writer. Brought up in a farming family with strong literary traditions. Maternal Grandfather, the Reverend William Betham, was an antiquary, and her aunt, Matilda Betham, was both a writer and a painter. Educated at home and at various schools in Ipswich and London. Also served as a governess for a short period of time. Published her first novel, The White House by the Sea, in 1857. Spent the early 1860s living in Europe and in 1864 published her second novel Doctor Jacob. The same year her father died and she moved home to take on the management of the farm with her sister. In 1865 when her sister died she moved to London, where she supported herself through her writing,  and where she became friends with Barbara Leigh Smith Bodichon and George Eliot. Amongst her most popular and critically acclaimed works were Kitty (1869), The Sylvestres (1871), Forestalled (1880), Love and Mirage (1884), Lord of the Harvest (1899), Under the German Ban in Alsace and Lorraine (1914) and Hearts of Alsace (1916). She published widely on agricultural subjects and France, where she had travelled extensively. In 1891 the French governement awarded her the title of Officier de l'instruction publique de France.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

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