Wednesday 30 March 2016

Georgina de Bellasis Bowen-Colthurst (1855 - 1921) - Irish

Georgina was born on 2nd March 1855 in Cork, Ireland.  Her parents were Alfred Greer and Peggy Bowen-Colthurst.   She married Robert Walter Travers Bowen-Colthurst on 15th August 1872 and the couple had four children:  Mary, John, Peggy and Robert.   They lived at Oakgrove and Dripsey Castle in Carrignamuck, Co. Cork, Ireland.

Georgina's WW1 Collection 'It is for Man to choose' was published by Elkin Mathews in 1920.  It was dedicated to the memory of her son, Robert Macgregor, who was born in 1883.  He was a Captain in the 1st Battalion Leinster Regiment and was killed in action on The Western Front.  The inscription read: 'To my grandson, Patrick, in memory of his dearly-loved father, killed at St. Eloi, 15th March 1915, in the World War.'

Captain Robert Macgregor Bowen-Colthurst is commemorated on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial in France.

Georgina died in 1921.

James (Jimmy) Taylor contacted me a few days ago to explain that Georgina was Irish and not Britsh, so I have corrected my list of female poets.  He very kindly sent me some of Georgina’s poems to share with you.  Jimmy Taylor is the official biographer of Georgina’s son John C. Bowen-Colthurst.

The poems are taken from 'Two Minutes' published in London in 1927 and co-written with Peggy Colthurst (1815 - 1880) and Mary B.C. Cottingham, Georgina's daughter.

The photograph of Georgina when she was presented at Court to the King and Queen is by kind permission of Georgina’s Granddaughter, Georgiana Sutherlin.


Saturday 19 March 2016

Joan Emma Violet Warburg (1902 – 1993) – British poet (schoolgirl in WW1)

Joan was born on 13th November 1902 in London, a member of the Warburg Family from Germany.  Joan's parents were John Cimon Warburg, born in Paddington, and Violet Amalia Warburg, nee Sichel, who was born in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. They were married in London in 1897.   Joan had two siblings - John Frederic, born in 1898 and Margaret Susan, born in 1900.

Joan's brother John Frederic Warburg and her uncle Sir Oscar Emmanuel Warburg, were both officers in the Royal Garrisonn Artillery during the First World War.  Her brother was sent to Ypres on the Western Front, where he served as a 2nd Lieutenant.  He became a publisher after the war and achieved fame by publishing George Orwell's 'Animal Farm' after the novel had been rejected by Faber.

Joan had a collection of her WW1 poetry published by Humphreys in 1918 under the title "Gossamer and Honey", when she was still at school.

I am trying to find further information, poems and a photograph of Joan.  If anyone can help please get in touch.

Sunday 13 March 2016

Evelyn Underhill (1875 – 1941) – British writer and poet

Evelyn was born on 6th December 1875 in Wolverhampton.   Her father was Arthur Underhill, a barrister and keen yachtsman, and her mother Alice Lucy Underhill, nee Ironmonger.

In 1901, Evelyn was listed on the Census as a ‘bookbinder’. She married Hubert Stuart Moore who was also a barrister in 1907.  They travelled extensively together.

Evelyn wrote and published a large number of books and was widely respected as an expert on theology.   Her WW1 Poetry Collection was “Theophanies A Book of Verses”, which was published by Dent in 1916, and her poems were published in nine First World War Poetry Anthologies.  Read some of Evelyn’s WW1 poetry here:
Evelyn lived through the Blitz on London in 1940, following which her health deteriorated.  She died on 15th June 1941 and is buried in the Churchyard Extension at St-John-in-Hampstead.

You can explore the relationship between Evelyn Underhill and another WW1 Female Poet, May Sinclair, in a new short article, 'Plunging into Reality'.  Describing the relationship and correspondence between Evelyn Underhill and May Sinclair the article has just been published on the Sinclair Society website -

The author, Alice Theobald, is an outstanding undergraduate student at the University of Oxford and has been researching modernist mysticism for her disertation.

There is also an Evelyn Underhill Association -