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Peer Reviewed

A Scottish Dozen: Uncollected Poems by Marion Bernstein

Linda Fleming and Edward Cohen


1 See Tom Leonard, ed., Radical Renfrew: Poetry from the French Revolution to the First World War by Poets Born, or Sometime Resident in, the County of Renfrewshire (Edinburgh: Polygon, 1990); Hamish Whyte, ed., Mungo’s Tongues: Glasgow Poems 1630-1990 (Edinburgh: Mainstream, 1993); Edwin Morgan, Glasgow Poets Past and Present: The Story of a City (Hamilton, NZ: U of Waikato, 1993); Valentina Bold, “Beyond ‘The Empire of the Gentle Heart’: Scottish Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century,” A History of Scottish Women’s Writing, ed. Douglas Gifford and Dorothy McMillan (Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP, 1997) 246-61; Robert Crawford and Mick Imlah, eds., The New Penguin Book of Scottish Verse (London: Penguin, 2000); Alan Riach, “The Literature of Industrialisation,” The Edinburgh History of Scottish Literature, 2: Enlightenment, Britain, and Empire (1707-1918), ed. Susan Manning (Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP, 2007) 236-43; and Florence Boos, ed., Working-Class Women Poets in Victorian Britain (Peterborough, ON: Broadview, 2008).

2 In 1880-82 the Glasgow Weekly Mail published a series of forty-five sketches of “Minor Scottish Poets” selected by Alexander G. Murdoch (1843-91). Jessie Russell was No. 33 and Mary Cross was No. 42. The remaining subjects of these “biographical notes” were men.

3 William Canton (1845-1926) assumed the position of editor of the Glasgow Weekly Herald in 1876. A prolific writer of fiction and poetry, he remained in Glasgow for fifteen years and then went on to London as editor of the Contemporary Review and the Sunday Magazine. We are grateful to David Finkelstein for assistance in identifying Canton as the person responsible for changing the socio-intellectual climate at the Herald.

4 Modern Scottish Poets, ed. D. H. Edwards, 16 vols. (Brechin: Edwards, 1880-97. In addition to the verses of hundreds of minor Scottish figures, Edwards printed selections from Thomas Carlyle, Arthur Conan Doyle, William Sharp, Robert Louis Stevenson, and James Thomson.

5 John Nevins Andrews, 1829-1883, was one of the leading figures in the establishment of the Seventh-Day Adventist church and its first official missionary to Europe. His account of his visit to Glasgow and his meeting with Bernstein and her mother appeared in the Review and Herald, 17 July 1879, p. 28.

6 See J. M. Bumstead, The People’s Clearance: Highland Emigration to North America 1770-1815 (Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP, 1982); Willie Orr, Deer Forests, Landlords and Crofters: The Western Highlands in Victorian and Edwardian Times (Edinburgh: Donald, 1982); Peter Womack, Improvement and Romance: Constructing the Myth of the Highlands (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1989); Murray Pittock, The Invention of Scotland: The Stuart Myth and the Scottish Identity, 1638 to the Present (London: Routledge, 1991); T. M. Devine, Clanship to Crofters’ War: The Social Transformation of the Scottish Highlands (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1994; Ewen A. Cameron, Land for the People?: The British Government and the Scottish Highlands, c. 1880-1925 (East Linton: Tuckwell, 1996); Eric Richards, The Highland Clearances: People, Landlords and Rural Turmoil (Edinburgh: Berlinn, 2008).

7 Bernstein’s assault on the laird is surprising because, as Devine observes, “poetry of the nineteenth century demonstrates a tendency to blame factors, tenants, tacksmen, sheep-farmers and even sheep [for the crofters’ cultural dislocations] but rarely individual landowners” (215).

8 Records of the Royal Society for the Relief of Indigent Gentlewomen of Scotland, Summary Sheets of Applications to the Trustees of the Fund for the Year 1898, Application No. 51. We are grateful to the Society for permission to cite this record.

9 Royal Literary Fund, Form of Application for an Author, File No. 2686, 4 October 1904.


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