Home  »  Volume XI: English THE PERIOD OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION  »  § 17. The Moral Tale in Verse

The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume XI. The Period of the French Revolution.

XVI. Children’s Books

§ 17. The Moral Tale in Verse

Quakers were very active during this period, though most of their works have stood the test of time very ill. Mary Elliott produced a number of short tales (Aunt Mary’s Tales, Tales for Boys, The Rambles of a Butterfly and others) between 1810 and 1820, all of which sold largely. Priscilla Wakefield has already been mentioned: she wrote some sixteen works between 1791 and 1810, the best-known being Mental Improvement, Juvenile Anecdotes, Leisure Hours, An Introduction to Botany and Instinct Displayed. She was a remarkable woman, largely responsible for the character of her grandson, Edward Gibbon Wakefield. She has fallen into oblivion; yet, admirers from America made special pilgrimages to see her in her old age. Lancaster “backed” her as against Mrs. Trimmer. Minor fabulists include Mary Mister (The Adventures of a Doll, 1816), Miss Sandham, Maria Crabbe, Esther Hewlett, I. Day, Arabella Argus (The Juvenile Spectator and Adventures of a Donkey), and many others.