The themes Elizabeth Eleanor Siddal wrote about
Elizabeth Eleanor Siddal was an English artists' model, poet and artist who was painted and drawn extensively by artists of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, including Walter Deverell, William Holman Hunt, John Everett Millais (including Millais' 1852 painting Ophelia) and most of Dante Gabriel Rossetti's early paintings of women.
Named Elizabeth Eleanor Siddall, after her mother, Lizzie was born on 25 July 1829, at the family’s home at 7 Charles Street, Hatton Garden. She was born to Charles Crooke Siddall, who claimed that his family descended from nobility, and Eleanor Evans, a family of both English and Welsh descent. At the time of Lizzie’s birth, her parents were not poverty stricken: her father had his own cutlery-making business. Around 1831, the Siddall family moved to the borough of Southwark, in south London, a less salubrious area than Hatton Garden. It was in Southwark that the rest of Lizzie’s siblings were born: Lydia, to whom Lizzie was particularly close, Mary, Clara, James and Henry. Although there is no record of her having attended school, Lizzie was able to read and write, presumably having been taught by her parents. She developed a love of poetry at a young age, after discovering a poem by Tennyson on a scrap of newspaper that had been used to wrap a pat of butter; this discovery was one of Lizzie’s inspirations to start writing her own poetry.
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