ROSSETTI, Christina

(1830 - 1894)
“My heart is like a singing bird.”

Christina Georgina Rossetti was raised in London in the ideal household for creative talent to blossom. Her Italian father was a poet, political exile, Dante Scholar and lecturer; her Italian/English mother a trained governess who educated her own children. All her siblings enjoyed successful careers themselves in art or literature. 

She composed her first story before she could write and had her first poem published at the age of eleven.  Later she wrote that time spent alone in her grandfather’s cottage garden inspired her to write poetry.  She is most famous for Goblin Market and Other Poems, featuring cover artwork by her brother Dante. After its publication in 1862 many acclaimed her as the natural successor to Elizabeth Browning (who had died the previous year) as the leading British female poet of the day.  Although ‘Market’ was ostensibly a fairy story, some critics have interpreted it as an allegorical tale with altogether deeper meanings associated with the role of women in Victorian England, erotic desire and temptation and redemption. Her later work includes the love poem Remember and the words for the Christmas carol In the Bleak Midwinter.

Rossetti’s health was fragile for much of her life. She suffered a nervous breakdown at only fourteen and experienced periodic bouts of depression as an adult. In 1872 she nearly died of Graves Disease and in 1894 eventually succumbed to recurrence of a cancer operated on the year before.

Please scroll down to see our current stock of first editions by Rossetti, including examples with artwork by leading illustrators such as Florence Harrison and Arthur Rackham.

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 Christina ROSSETTI

Books by this author

Goblin Market

ROSSETTI, Christina