Vera Brittain

(1655 words)

Vera Mary Brittain was born in Newcastle-under-Lyme in Staffordshire, England into a middle-class family, and grew up in Buxton, Derbyshire. Her father, Thomas Arthur Brittain, was a paper manufacturer from a wealthy Staffordshire family. Her mother, Edith Mary Bervon, was by contrast, as Brittain wrote, “without money or pedigree, and had nothing but her shy and wistful prettiness to recommend her” (Testament of Youth 19). Educated at home by a governess and later sent to St. Monica’s School in Kingswood, Surrey, Brittain had to convince her father and mother to allow her to pursue further education at Oxford. More than one well-meaning middle-class family acquaintance vehemently counseled Mrs. Brittain that …

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Ockerstrom, Lolly. "Vera Brittain". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 29 February 2008
[, accessed 05 July 2015.]

Articles on Brittain's works

  1. England’s Hour: An Autobiography 1939-1941
  2. Testament of Friendship: The Story of Winifred Holtby
  3. Testament of Youth