Born in London on 29 September, 1810, Elizabeth Gaskell grew up in the early decades of the nineteenth century in rural Cheshire and despite her reputation as a writer of industrial fiction it was the older, pre-urban world of her childhood which provided the setting and stimulus for her finest and most mature work. She was brought up in the care of her maternal family, the Hollands, her mother, Elizabeth, having died when she was 13 months old. An old-established Cheshire family, the Hollands were typical of the Unitarian tradition and faith to which they belonged: solidly middle-class (they were widely represented in the professions of law, medicine, farming, banking and business, and connected through friendship and marriage to the Wedgwoods, the Turners, and the Darwins), their…

1982 words

Citation: Billington, Josie. "Elizabeth Gaskell". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 08 January 2001 [, accessed 14 April 2024.]

1699 Elizabeth Gaskell 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

Save this article

If you need to create a new bookshelf to save this article in, please make sure that you are logged in, then go to your 'Account' here

Leave Feedback

The Literary Encyclopedia is a living community of scholars. We welcome comments which will help us improve.