The remarkable Anne Brontë

The remarkable Anne Brontë

A remarkable woman, Anne Brontë's presence resonates through the years

Born: Mon 17 January 1820
Died: Mon 28 May 1849
Novels: Agnes Grey and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
Pseudonym: Acton Bell

  • Anne had 5 siblings. The two eldest sisters died at very young ages, partly due to their poor treatment at the boarding school that they attended. Her other siblings were Charlotte, Emily, and her brother Branwell
  • Anne is the youngest Brontë sibling
  • Agnes Grey was inspired by Anne's own experience working as a governess
  • Anne resigned from her post as governess for the Robinson's in Thorp Green in 1846, which is believed to be because she knew of Branwell's affair with the Lady of the House
  • Agnes Grey was published in 1847
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall was published in three volumes in 1848
  • After Anne's death, it is said that Charlotte stopped the republication of of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, saying that "the choice of subject in that work is a mistake. It is too little consonant with the character, tastes and ideas of the gentle, retiring inexperienced writer."
  • Anne's novels tackle issues that, when she was writing, were not considered material women should even think of. Anne knew, however, that the standard silence on the subjects she wrote about did not mean that people were not experiencing them. Her protagonists, are as Lucy Mangan writes, "ordinary women coming to extraordinary decisions"
  • Anne is the only Brontë sibling who is not buried at Haworth. She is instead buried in a cliff-top cemetery overlooking the sea in Scarborough, which is where she went for a last attempt of recovery from tuberculosis
  • Agnes Grey was written before Charlotte's Jane Eyre. In Agnes Grey, Anne takes a stark look at female empowerment and self-worth, themes which Charlotte later built upon in Jane Eyre
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall challenged a lot of the contemporary sensibilities and social 'norms' of Victorian society
  • The content of Anne's stories and the issues that she confronted in her writing show the intelligent and resolute mind of a remarkable young woman.