So he uprooted, one by one
The free things that had loved the sun,
The happy, eager, fruitful seeds
That had not known that they were weeds.
(The Despot, 25-28)
Born in London but educated in convents on the Continent and in England, Edith Nesbit started out as a writer of stories. In 1880, seven months pregnant, she married Hubert Bland, a founding member of the Fabian Society when it was founded four years later. Caught in a marriage with four children and infidelities on both sides, and with the main responsibility for income, Nesbit wrote commercial novels and stories, but she continued to produce volumes of poetry in hope of literary acclaim. Success arrived with her children's books, especially the Bastable novels (The Story of the Treasure-Seekers, Would-be-Goods, and The New Treasure-seekers) and The Railway Children (1906). By this time she and Bland has converted to Roman Catholicism. Three years after Bland's death in 1914, Nesbit married Thomas Terry Tucker. She died of cancer in Jesson St. Mary's, Kent. Biographies include Doris Moore's E. Nesbit: A Biography, rev. edition (London: Benn, 1967; PR 4149 B4Z7 Robarts Library), and Julia Briggs' A Woman of Passion: The Life of E. Nesbit 1858-1924 (London: Hutchinson, 1987; PR 4149 B42S6 Robarts Library).
Given name: Edith
Family name: Nesbit
Birth date: 19 August 1858
Death date: 4 May 1924
Cause of death: Cancer