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Re: Avebury, from Experience of Life, Elizabeth Sewell
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nigelswift wrote:
Ahaaa! Looks like it doesn't it.

Warn't Mary great?!

Yes, but perhaps there's a sad story here.

I'm not sure if the following dates are spot on but Mary lived from 1852-1888 and was only 36 when she died. Elizabeth lived from 1815-1906 and died at the ripe old age of 91. Elizabeth's book was published in 1853 (or 1858?) and would have been in circulation for 20 years by the time Mary was 21? (plenty of time for it to have reached Pennsylvania). Given that the Copes were an extremely religious family, and their ancestors originally hailed from Avebury, it seems likely that Mary would have read Elizabeth's book and that this had, perhaps, inspired Mary to write her poem.

The question is, did Mary ever actually visit Avebury? Parts of her poem seem based on firsthand observation while other parts seem a little fanciful. Her father undertook a religious journey to England and Europe two years after Mary's death; was this journey undertaken in memory of his daughter, and the origins of the Cope family in Avebury?

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Posted by Littlestone
14th September 2010ce

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