An Edition of the Poems of Ann of Swansea

  • James Henderson

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    The aim of this study is to revive interest in the life and work of the neglected writer Ann of Swansea (1764-1835) through presenting a new edition of her by now very rare and inaccessible published poetry collections, Poems on Miscellaneous Subjects (1783) and Poetic Trifles (1811), and the songs from her
    play Tammany (1794). I also include an edition of selected poems from her unpublished manuscripts. These poems, which presently exist in manuscript form in a collection of Ann of Swansea's papers housed in the archives of the Swansea Museum, have never previously been edited or published; I hope to show that they contain a wealth of material which adds substantively to our sense of the poet's abilities and the nature of her engagement with the society and literature of her day. But the thesis argues that Ann of Swansea's published works also have been inappropriately ignored; her poems have never been included in twentieth century anthologies of eighteenth or nineteenth century verse. Yet she was a daring poet who wrote challengingly and interestingly on such issues of modern interest as the position of women in society, female sexuality, the atrocities of war, the plight of colonized peoples, the slave trade, and infanticide. The time seems more than ripe for a revival of interest in her work, and it is my aim to bring about that revival through making her poetry more readily and more fully accessible to the modern reader.
    Date of Award2005
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorJane Aaron (Supervisor)

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