Sophia Lee (2149 words)


Sophia Priscilla Lee, author of fiction and plays and headmistress of a successful school, is chiefly remembered for her novel The Recess (1783-85). A bestseller in its own time, it remains an exciting page-turner that narrates the adventures of twin heroines among most of the notable persons of Queen Elizabeth’s court. It was the first novel in England to combine romance and sentiment with a vivid historical background.

Sophia Lee was born in London in 1750, the second of the five children of two busy actors, John and Anna Sophia Lee. They played leading roles in theaters all over the British Isles, and for some years John managed companies in Edinburgh and Bath. It was an unsettled existence, with the family …

Citation: Rogers, Katharine. "Sophia Lee". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 January 2008; last revised 30 August 2018. [, accessed 18 May 2022.]

2675 Sophia Lee 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.