Among all women poets of the English-speaking world in the nineteenth century, none was held in higher critical esteem or was more admired for the independence and courage of her views than Elizabeth Barrett Browning. (http://www.poetryfoundation.org/bio/elizabeth-barrett-browning)
Elizabeth Barrett Browning was born on 6 March 1806 at Coxhoe Hall, County Durham, England. She started to write poems in her early childhood. And in 1820 she firstly got 50 printed copies of her narrative poem “The Battle of Marathon” from her father.
She continued her successful writing and published her works both in England, and America. Her works were highly praised and her popularity grew. That time she met Robert Browning, who, six years younger than she, wrote her a letter full of compliments on 10 January, 1845.
A year later they married and lived happily encouraging each other in working and creating.
The most famous book by Elizabeth Barrett Browning is “Sonnets From The Portuguese” (1850). It is Browning’s collection of forty-four Petrarchan love sonnets, written during her courtship with Robert Browning (1845 and 1846).
Now let's read and listen to one of her amazing sonnets !
How Do I Love Thee? (Sonnet 43)
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. I love thee to the depth and breadth and height My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight For the ends of being and ideal grace. I love thee to the level of every day's Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light. I love thee freely, as men strive for right. I love thee purely, as they turn from praise. I love thee with the passion put to use In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith. I love thee with a love I seemed to lose With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath, Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death.
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