5 Things You Didn’t Know About Charlotte Bronte


Writer of the literary masterpiece “Jane Eyre,” sister to Emily, Anne and Branwell, and mistress of the Yorkshire moors, Charlotte Brontë (and the remainder of her household) are sources of unusual fascination to most people, in addition to to writers and filmmakers. (A brand new TV miniseries, “To Walk Invisible” aired on PBS in April 2017). Much of individuals’s perceptions of Charlotte as a shy invalid had been gathered from an 1857 biography written by her pal Elizabeth Gaskell, and now historians understand the portrayal was incomplete and incorrect. As our impressions proceed to alter, listed below are 5 issues chances are you’ll not have recognized about Charlotte Brontë.

1. She Hated Kids.

Brontë got here from an impoverished clergyman’s household and was compelled to earn a dwelling with just a few choices obtainable to her. Unfortunately, 2 of them — trainer and governess — concerned working with kids, which she loathed. While a trainer at Roe Head School, she wrote in her journal, “I had been toiling for nearly an hour. I sat sinking from irritation and weariness into a kind of lethargy. The thought came over me: Am I to spend all the best part of my life in this wretched bondage, forcibly suppressing my rage at the idleness, the apathy and the hyperbolic and most asinine stupidity of these fat headed oafs and on compulsion assuming an air of kindness, patience and assiduity? …. Just then a dolt came up with a lesson. I thought I should have vomited.”

2. She Lost Many Teeth.

This was not an unusual situation in these days, however Brontë apparently made an impression. Gaskell described Brontë to a pal this manner in a letter: “She is underdeveloped, thin and more than half a head shorter than I … [with] a reddish face, large mouth and many teeth gone; altogether plain.” Two years after “Jane Eyre” was printed, Brontë wrote to her pal Ellen Nussey in 1849, “I find I really must go to Mr. Atkinson the dentist [in Leeds] and ask him if he can do anything for my teeth.”

3. She Had a Beef with Jane Austen.

You might need thought the 2 Victorian woman novelists would have had one thing in frequent. But Brontë was not impressed by the suggestion that she may study from Jane Austen. Though esteemed literary critic George Henry Lewes wrote a good assessment of “Jane Eyre,” he thought it had moments of melodrama and praised Austen for her extra naturalistic model. After seeing the discover, Brontë determined to learn “Pride and Prejudice.”

She wrote to Lewes,

“Why do you like Miss Austen so very much? I am puzzled on that point. What induced you to say you would rather have written ‘Pride and Prejudice’ or ‘Tom Jones’ than any of the Waverly Novels? I had not seen ‘Pride and Prejudice’ till I read that sentence of yours, and then I got the book and studied it. And what did I find? An accurate daguerrotyped portrait of a common-place face; a carefully-fenced, highly cultivated garden with near borders and delicate flowers— but no glance of a bright vivid physiognomy — no open country — no fresh air — no blue hill — no bonny beck. I should hardly like to live with her ladies and gentlemen in their elegant but confined houses.” 

Perhaps the way in which Lewes appeared to pit the 2 novelists towards one another contributed to Brontë’s dislike. Not to say that the 2 girls approached the topic of affection from very totally different factors of view.

4. She Had a Passionate Marriage.

Brontë acquired 4 marriage proposals, the final 2 from Arthur Nicholls, her father’s curate who had been in love together with her for years. Brontë didn’t love Nicholls and so turned him down the primary time. Her father additionally violently opposed the proposal. Brontë wrote to her pal Ellen Nussey, “Agitation and anger disproportionate to the event ensued; if I had beloved Mr. Nicholls, and had heard such epithets utilized to him as had been used [by her father], it could have transported me previous my endurance; because it was, my blood boiled with a way of injustice.” Two years later, her father gave his permission and the 2 had been married in 1854. In a short while, she was referring to her husband as “my dear Arthur” in letters and noting that “every day makes my attachment to him stronger.” But their happiness was transient.

5. Her Death Has Been a Source of Mystery.

Just 9 months after her marriage, Charlotte Brontë died at age 39. Her dying certificates listed the trigger as “phthisis” or tuberculosis, which had killed her 2 sisters earlier. Her biographer Elizabeth Gaskell wrote that she had signs of “perpetual nausea and ever-recurring faintness.” This has led to hypothesis that she may have died from typhoid (which a servant had died from earlier) or pneumonia (she caught a chilly after a stroll within the rain). But probably the most attention-grabbing concept is that she was pregnant on the time and suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum, or “runaway morning sickness” (which is what the Duchess of Cambridge additionally skilled when pregnant). Others dispute this, noting that tuberculosis may absolutely clarify her signs and her physician by no means talked about she was pregnant.


Leave a Reply