Love through the ages

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ronte is one of the three Bronte sisters, all famous novelists and poets of their period. The sisters published under male names, Charlotte’s being Currer Bell. She is most famous for her novel ‘Jane Eyre’. After the deaths of her sisters, Charlotte was persuaded to reveal her identity and became friends with other authors of the time. She was married for only a year before her death in 1855.
Jane Eyre (1847)- Jane has been shown Mr. Rochester’s wife in the attic
‘Well, Jane! Not a word of reproach? Nothing bitter - nothing poignant? Nothing to cut a feeling or sting a passion? You sit quietly where I have placed you, and regard me with a weary, a passive look.

‘Jane, I never meant to wound you thus. If the man who had but one little ewe lamb that was dear to him as a daughter, that ate of his bread and drank of his cup, and lay in his bosom, had by some mistake slaughtered it at the shambles, he would not have rued his bloody blunder as much as I now rue mine. Will you ever forgive me?’

Reader, I forgave him at that moment and on the spot. There was such deep remorse in his eye, such true pity in his tone, such manly energy in his manner; and besides, there was such unchanged love in his whole look and mien - I forgave him all: yet not in words, not outwardly; only at my heart’s core.

‘You know I’m a scoundrel, Jane?’ ere long he inquired wistfully - wondering, I suppose, at my continued silence and tameness, the result rather of weakness than of will.

‘Yes, sir.’

1837 – Queen Victoria crowned Queen of England. She becomes the longest reigning monarch in British history, dying in 1901 after 63 years on the throne.

Victorian Period – 1830-1901

Realism – 1830-1900

Emily Bronte (1818-1848)


mily Bronte, another of the famous Bronte sisters, was a poet and author, publishing under the name of Ellis Bell due to the social prejudices against female authors at the time. Emily is most famous for her only novel ‘Wuthering Heights’. Emily died at the age of 30 after contracting tuberculosis.

Wuthering Heights (1847) - Catherine speaks of her love for Linton and Heathcliff

I cannot express it; but surely you and everybody have a notion that there is or should be an existence of yours beyond you. What were the use of my creation, if I were entirely contained here? My great miseries in this world have been Heathcliff's miseries, and I watched and felt each from the beginning: my great thought in living is himself. If all else perished, and he remained, I should still continue to be; and if all else remained, and he were annihilated, the universe would turn to a mighty stranger: I should not seem a part of it. My love for Linton is like the foliage in the woods: time will change it, I'm well aware, as winter changes the trees. My love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath: a source of little visible delight, but necessary. Nelly, I am Heathcliff! He's always, always in my mind: not as a pleasure, any more than I am always a pleasure to myself, but as my own being. So don‘t talk of our separation again; it is impracticable;

Victorian Period – 1830-1901

Realism – 1830-1900

Naturalism – 1865-1900

Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892)

Tennyson was Poet Laureate for much of Queen Victoria’s reign, from 1850-1892. Behind Shakespeare, he is the second most quoted writer in the English language. Much of his verse is based on mythological themes and unlike most of his contemporaries he wrote in blank verse, rare for the time. His most famous works include, ‘In Memoriam’, ‘Idylls of the King’ and ‘Ulysses’.

Break, Break, Break (written 1835, published 1842)
Break, break, break,
On thy cold gray stones, O Sea!
And I would that my tongue could utter
The thoughts that arise in me.

O, well for the fisherman's boy,

That he shouts with his sister at play!
O, well for the sailor lad,
That he sings in his boat on the bay!

And the stately ships go on

To their haven under the hill;
But O for the touch of a vanished hand,
And the sound of a voice that is still!

Break, break, break,

At the foot of thy crags, O Sea!
But the tender grace of a day that is dead
Will never come back to me.

Crimea War – 1853-1856 – the war fought between Great Britain and Turkey against Russia. Florence Nightingale found her fame through nursing during this war.

Key events include The Charge of the Light Brigade in 1854

Victorian Period – 1830-1901

Realism – 1830-1900

Naturalism – 1865-1900

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