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Lady Speranza Wilde

  • Woman's intellect, keen, brilliant, and fearless, is rapidly permeating all departments of literature, and making its influence felt upon the mind of the age ...

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Miss Martineau," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • Every eye can detect the grains of gold, but it is only the philosopher can prove to us how much dross the ore contains.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Miss Martineau," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • Her style, also, is eminently terse and epigrammatic. Praise, which always has a tendency to weak diffuseness, would not suit it; therefore she is sparing of the holy, consecrating oil, and, even if she does anoint the head, by no means allows any to run down the beard, much less to reach the skirts of the clothing.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Miss Martineau," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • Human nature is a mystic duality, half animal, half angel; a worm, a God; and the contrast and strife between the two natures is never so marked as in the gifted.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Miss Martineau," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • ... self-trust, we know, is the first secret of success ...

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Miss Martineau," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • ... this passionate yearning for solitude, so necessary to genius yet so difficult to obtain, is perhaps the very cause of the strange, irritable, cynical eccentricities of temper and manner so often observable in the priesthood of intellect.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Miss Martineau," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • Strong nations fight, oppressed nations sing ...

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Thomas More," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • ... the passionate poets seem to die younger than the reflective ...

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Wordsworth," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • Nations are like individuals. They pass from doubt to faith; but the transit is the most fearful phase of a human life.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Wordsworth," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • Ambition is peculiarly the passion of great minds. It is the aspiration after a sphere of those who feel within them the capability of filling one.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "Charles Kean as King Richard," Notes on Men, Women, and Books ()
  • Weary men, what reap ye? — Gold corn for the stranger. / What sow ye? — Human corpses that wait for the avenger. / Fainting forms, hunger stricken, what see ye in the offing? / Stately ships to bear our food away, amid the stranger's scoffing. / There's a proud array of soldiers — what do they round your door? / They guard our master's granaries from the thin hands of the poor. / Pale mothers, wherefore weeping? Would to God that we were dead — / Our children swoon before us, and we cannot give them bread.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • "The Famine Year," in M.J. Brown, ed., Historical Ballad Poetry of Ireland ()
  • When you are as old as I, young man, you will know there is only one thing in the world worth living for, and that is sin.

    • Lady Speranza Wilde,
    • in Horace Wyndham, Speranza: A Biography of Lady Wilde ()

Lady Speranza Wilde, Irish-born English poet

(1821 - 1896)

Real name: Lady Jane Francesca Elgee Wilde. She used Speranza as a nom de plume and also wrote as John Fenshaw Ellis.