1854 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Mary Ann Browne

Robert Shelton Mackenzie, Note in Noctes Ambrosianae, ed. Mackenzie (1854) 3:416n.



Mary Ann Browne, whose poem of Ada was published in 1827, before she was fifteen. Many other poetical works followed in due course of time, of which Ignatia, a passionate tale of love, was the best. She contributed many articles to the Dublin University Magazine, — in which American readers may recollect her Gems from the Antique, and a beautiful series of prose stories called Recollections of a Portrait Painter. She was married in her 29th year to Mr. James Grey, (a nephew of the Ettrick Shepherd,) a gentleman much older than herself, and went with him to reside in Ireland. She died, at Sanday's Well, Cork, in 1844. Her later poems, written after the struggles of life had taught her to look into her won heart, exhibited great force and feeling, with a depth of thought beyond what lady-authors usually express. She was, in many respects, one of the most charming women I ever knew; certainly the most loveable authoress. She was not handsome, but her eyes were remarkably fine in their dark beauty, and her ringing laugh, (for she was a mirthful creature, playful as a young fawn, and natural as a young child,) wafted music in its silvery sounds.