Mark Brown “Charlotte Brontë’s $1.25m ‘little book’ of 10 poems returns home” https://www.theguardian.com/books/2022/apr/25/charlotte-brontes-125m-little-book-of-10-poems-returns-home
Its artistic value is also through the roof. “It is phenomenal really,” said Ann Dinsdale, principal curator of the Brontë Parsonage Museum*4. “I can’t quite believe it. I haven’t been able to take it all in yet.”
The manuscript is one of the “little books” written when Charlotte and her siblings Emily, Anne and Branwell were children. Often written for Branwell’s toy soldiers, the manuscripts shine light on just how creative and astoundingly talented the four of them were.
“She’s known for her novels but initially Charlotte wanted to be a poet,” said Dinsdale. “We know that she sent samples of her poetry to the poet laureate and she told him of her ambition to be a poet, which is quite something.”
The poet laureate was Robert Southey*5 who shamefully advised her against a literary career. “Literature cannot be the business of a woman’s life: and it ought not to be,” he wrote.
The titles of the poems have been known to experts and are a long way from an isolated parsonage and the windswept moors of Yorkshire. They include On Seeing the Ruins of the Tower of Babel, Songs of an Exile and Meditations While Journeying in a Canadian Forest.
Astonishingly, the poems themselves have never been published, photographed, transcribed or even summarised.
Nazia Parveen “Rare Charlotte Brontë ‘little book’ to go on show at Haworth” https://www.theguardian.com/books/2020/jan/31/charlotte-bronte-little-book-on-show-haworth-parsonage-museum
*5:See eg. “Robert Southey” https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/robert-southey Geoffrey Carnall “Southey, Robertfree (1774–1843)” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography https://www.oxforddnb.com/view/10.1093/ref:odnb/9780198614128.001.0001/odnb-9780198614128-e-26056;jsessionid=A67AC11C1C83DF515B67C58A174D0DA5 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Southey