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Manning, Anne (1807–1879)

Manning, Anne (1807–1879)

English novelist . Born in London, England, on February 17, 1807; died in Tunbridge Wells, England, on September 14, 1879; daughter of William Oke Manning (an insurance broker for Lloyd's) and Joan Whatmore (Gibson) Manning (daughter of the principal surveyorof the London Docks and a distant cousin of Charles and Mary Lamb ); educated at home; never married.

Selected writings:

A Sister's Gift (1826); The Village Belle (1838); The Maiden and Married Life of Mary Powell (1849); Cherry and Violet (1853); The Household of Sir Thomas More (1860); Family Pictures (1861).

Born on February 17, 1807, in London, Anne Manning was the daughter of Joan Gibson Manning and William Oke Manning, an insurance broker, and the granddaughter of a Unitarian minister. Educated at home by her mother, who was an exceptionally well-read woman for the time, Manning was introduced to history, science, and languages. As a young girl, she showed a talent for painting, winning a gold medal from the Royal Academy for a copy she made of a painting by Murillo. Passing on the education that had been lavished upon her by her mother, she in turn taught her younger brothers and sisters. It was for her younger siblings that Manning wrote her first book, A Sister's Gift, published in 1826. This was followed by The Village Belle in 1838, and 11 years later by The Maiden and Married Life of Mary Powell, which went through a number of editions and is the novel for which she is probably best known. Her later books, several of which are set in the 16th century, include Cherry and Violet (1853), The Household of Sir Thomas More (1860), and Family Pictures (1861). She was also an occasional contributor to Sharpe's Magazine.

Never married, Manning lived a retired life within her family circle, moving from London to Mickleham with her parents and later, after their deaths, to Reigate Hill. She died at the age of 72 on September 14, 1879, while living in the Tunbridge Wells home of a sister.

Don Amerman, freelance writer, Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania

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