Online Encyclopedia

ELIZA COOK (1818–1889)

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Originally appearing in Volume V07, Page 71 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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ELIZA COOK (1818–1889), English author, was born on the 24th of December 1818, in Southwark, being the daughter of a local tradesman. She was self-taught, and began when a girl to write poetry for the Weekly Dispatch and New Monthly. In 1838 she published Melaia and other Poems, and from 1849 to 1854 conducted a paper for family reading called Eliza Cook's Journal. She also published Jottings from my Journal (186o), and New Echoes (1864); and in 1863 she was given a civil list pension of boo a year. As the author of a single poem, "The Old Armchair," Eliza Cook's name was for a generation after 1838 a household word both in England and in America, her kindly domestic sentiment making her a great favourite with the working-class and middle-class public. She died at Wimbledon on the 23rd of September 1889.
End of Article: ELIZA COOK (1818–1889)
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JAMES COOK (1728-1779)

Additional information and Comments

For many years the name 'Eliza Cook' occasionally entered my mind....and why?...because as a boy of eight years I came to look inside a cupboard inside my parents' bedroom.Inside it were several books one of which caught my eye.Its gold binding was what attracted me to this book lying on its side amidst several others.I pulled the book out and looked at it .I recollect being disappointed by the 'look' of the cover.It was hard,with a slightly wrinkled surface and the book was dark gray in colour. The 'spine'was slightly detatched at one edge.I recollect the title to be; The Poetical works of Elisa Cook. I hasten to add that this wording may not be correct as I am now trying to remember some 62 years back. The book was approximately 6inches tall....about 15cm,by 4inches wide....about 10cm and around 1.5inches thick....about3.6cm.My fascination and curiosity led me to open the book.Its gold binding shone like new and its pages seemed to be as thin as rice paper.The script on each page was in small black print and beautifully even to me.It had no pictures.I tried to read 'a page'.It was very difficult to understand.I tried flicking through the book but the pages were so thin that they sagged in such a limp way that they just would not 'flick'.I replaced the book and 'forgot'it for a while.Sometime later....maybe a couple of years,i remembered the book and went to look once more for it.Alas! it had gone....forever.But, somehow the book has remained in my mind and guess it will never be fogotten
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