Linguistic Anne Lister

Apparently Anne Lister took a great interest in languages. She was familiar with both latin and greek. The latter being a main interest which she dedicated many hours in learning. As an adult she spent a few months living in Paris and immersing herself in the french language. I guess she had great use of her language skills while on travel with miss Walker in Scandinavia and Russia.
In Russia and Georgia Anne Lister employed german servants, Mr and Mrs Gross (?). The name of the female servant was Grotza and Anne did not seem to like her very much. I haven’t been able to figure out if Anne was conversant in german or not, or if the german servants spoke some english. 

While travelling through Scandinavia in 1839 she made many notes on lingvistic matters. In a diary entry for August 1839, p. 18 she notes the names of common domestic animals, nature and fauna in both latin and swedish sometimes followed by an english translation. 
Lister also notes on certain historical persons and mentions king Gustav Wasa (1496-1560) who introduced Reformation Sweden. The pagan thunder-God Thor is also mentioned. There are also references to buildings, houses and barns she has seen and some houses perhaps she visited. Sometimes these diary entries are accompanied with a pen sketch.



Anne Lister in Sweden

It’s interesting to study the very last months and final journal entries made by Anne Lister while she was on her travel with miss Ann Walker in czarist Russia. They travelled together by horse and wagons with two german servants – a married couple. It was not always easy but Anne Lister continued to converse in written words and she documented many things while travelling through Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia and finally Georgia where she died after a hasty illness with fever. While in Sweden she visited many places. This drawing of a house in Nyby close to Uppsala.  

Anne Lister and contemporary research

I haven’t been able to write anything for years on Anne Lister in this wordpress blog and not much seems to happen in the research field either. The years pass quickly on with not much published. I hoped the movie ”The Secret Diaries of Anne Lister” would have sparked further interest to deepen any research in women’s history or gender studies. There are still numerous aspects to pick up on and topics are indeed available for any student or researcher to deepen further into and to publish. Maybe the material, i.e the volumes of Anne Lister’s diaries are still viewed as too hard to get through. As only parts of them are published, much thanks to the research of Helena Whitbread. The wast material needs to be organized and made available to the public.

Anne Lister and local history

I also wish I was an Anne Lister historian, but sadly I’m not. I first heard of Anne Lister in 2010 and I did a little research into her diaries myself after reading the works of Whitbread, Littleton and Green. Many people has contributed a lot through the history on the life and times of Anne Lister and Shibden Hall. I wish to recommend Malcolm Bull’s Calderdale site which has a lot of information on several families in West Yorkshire area as well as personal biographies and familiy trees. I therefore recommend his site “Malcom Bull’s Calderdale Companion”. Here’s a good link to start your own research:

The Ghosts of Shibden Hall

An interesting blog post concerning old ghosts haunting the Shibden Hall. It also retells the sad story of miss Ann Walker and her time as the owner of the Hall (1841-1848).

Ghosts and Legends of the Lower Calder Valley

Shibden Hall is one of the jewels in Halifax’s heritage crown and amongst Calderdale’s best-known tourist attractions. It is also increasingly one of the most haunted buildings in the area, although despite its antiquity, these ghost appear to be a relatively recent phenomena, unlike the hoary supernatural traditions of other venerable houses nearby in West Yorkshire such as Oakwell Hall at Gomersal or Bolling Hall near Bradford.

Occupation is recorded at the site from 1389 but the oak-timbered H-plan building standing today was originally constructed in 1420 with substantial improvements and additions being made in the 1520s and 1830s. Many have speculated that it was the model for Thrushcross Grange in Emily Brontë’s novel Wuthering Heights. Bronte taught at Law Hill School in Southowram in 1838 and would have been familiar with the Hall.

The hall was owned by the Lister family from 1615 until 1933, when the death of…

View original post 525 more words

Anne Lister revisited


I’ve managed to rebuild all my blog posts from a previous wordpressblog on the life and diaries of Ms. Anne Lister (1791-1840). The propose of this blog is present interesting “news”, articles and all things media concerning this Regency lady. She lived a very interesting life and it’s quite stunning that so little research has been done about her.

To my knowledge most, or perhaps all her diary pages has been carefully preserved and even scanned. It’s been more than a year since I posted anything new or anything new of particular interest. Time get in the way and one needs a lot of time when dealing with history.

Emily Brontë and a possible connection to Shibden Hall

There are many intriging questions sorrounding the life and times of Anne Lister. Did Lister ever meet with Charlotte Brontë is a question raised by many people over the years. Or, what did Emily Brontë know about Anne Lister’s life? We may never know… Historians and literary scholars may still ponder over it. A blog called The Reader’s Guide to Wuthering Heights has an interesting post on the subject. Did Brontë ever visit Shibden Hall mansion and is Shibden Hall a possible literary inspiration for Thruscross Grange?