Dinah Craik

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Dinah Craik
Dinah Maria Craik (née Mulock) by Sir Hubert von Herkomer.jpg
An 1887 portrait of Dinah Craik by Hubert von Herkomer
Born Dinah Maria Mulock
(1826-04-26)April 26, 1826
Stoke-on-Trent
Died 12 October 1887(1887-10-12) (aged 61)
Shortlands
Genre Novels
Spouse George Lillie Craik

Dinah Maria Craik (/krk/; born Dinah Maria Mulock, also often credited as Miss Mulock or Mrs. Craik) (20 April 1826 – 12 October 1887) was an English novelist and poet.

Life[edit]

Mulock was born at [Stoke-on-Trent]] to Dinah and Thomas Mulock and raised in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, where her father was then minister of a small congregation. Her childhood and early youth were much affected by his unsettled fortunes, but she obtained a good education from various quarters and felt called to be a writer.[clarification needed][1]

She came to London about 1846, much at the same time as two friends whose assistance was afterwards of the greatest service to her, Alexander Macmillan and Charles Edward Mudie. Introduced by Camilla Toulmin to the acquaintance of Westland Marston, she rapidly made friends in London, and found great encouragement for the stories for the young to which she at first confined herself, of which Cola Monti (1849) was the best known. In the same year she produced her first three-volume novel, The Ogilvies, which obtained a great success.[1]

It was followed in 1850 by Olive, perhaps the most imaginative of her fictions. The Head of the Family (1851) and Agatha's Husband (1853), in which the author used with great effect her recollections of East Dorset, were perhaps better constructed and more effective as novels, but had hardly the same charm. The delightful fairy story Alice Learmont was published in 1852, and numerous short stories contributed to periodicals, some displaying great imaginative power, were published in 1853 under the title of Avillion and other Tales. A similar collection, of inferior merit, appeared in 1857 under the title of Nothing New. [1]

Thoroughly established in public favour as a successful author, Miss Mulock took a cottage at Wildwood, North End, Hampstead, and became the ornament of a very extensive social circle. Her personal attractions were at this period of her life considerable, and her simple cordiality, staunch friendliness, and thorough goodness of heart perfected the fascination. In 1857, appeared the work by which she will be principally remembered, John Halifax, Gentleman, a very noble presentation of the highest ideal of English middle-class life, which after nearly forty years still stands boldly out from the works of the female writers of the period, George Eliot's excepted. In writing John Halifax, however, Miss Mulock had practically delivered her message, and her next important work, A Life for a Life (1859), though a very good novel more highly remunerated, and perhaps at the time more widely read, than John Halifax was far from possessing the latter's enduring charm. Mistress and Maid (1863), which originally appeared in Good Words, was inferior in every respect ; and, though the lapse was partly retrieved in Christian's Mistake (1865), her subsequent novels were of no great account. [1]

The genuine passion which had upborne her early works of fiction had not unnaturally faded out of middle life, and had as naturally been replaced by an excess of the didactic element. This the author seemed to feel herself, for several of her later publications were undisguisedly didactic essays, of which A Woman's Thoughts about Women and Sermons out of Church obtained most notice. [1] Another collection, titled The Unkind Word and Other Stories, included a scathing criticism of Benjamin Heath Malkin for overworking his son Thomas, a child prodigy who died at seven.[2]

In her later period, however, she returned to the fanciful tale which had so frequently employed her youth, and achieved a great success with The Little Lame Prince (1874), a charming story for the young. She had published poems in 1852, and in 1881 brought her pieces together under the title of Poems of Thirty Years, New and Old. They are a woman's poems, tender, domestic, and sometimes enthusiastic, always genuine song, and the product of real feeling; some such as Philip my King, verses addressed to her godson, Philip Bourke Marston, and Douglas, Douglas, tender and true achieved a wide popularity.

Family[edit]

She married George Lillie Craik a partner with Alexander Macmillan in the publishing house of Macmillan & Company, and nephew of George Lillie Craik, in 1864. They adopted a foundling baby girl, Dorothy, in 1869.

At Shortlands, near Bromley, Kent, while in a period of preparation for Dorothy's wedding, she died of heart failure on 12 October 1887, aged 61. Her last words were reported to have been: "Oh, if I could live four weeks longer! but no matter, no matter!" Her final book, An Unknown Country, was published by Macmillan in 1887, the year of her death. She is great-grandmother of journalist and WIRED Magazine contributor Katie Craik.

Bibliography[edit]

A comprehensive bibliography is in '’Dinah Mulock Craik'’ by Sally Mitchell, Boston: Twayne, 1983. This is reproduced concisely in Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature (Preview at Google Books). Additional Contributions to Periodicals: —

Tales, sketches, etc.

  • The Man in Green. By D. M. M. — 1846 Jul 11, in The Mirror Vol.1, pp. 20–23
  • Beranger and his Poems. By D. M. M. — 1846 Aug 1, in The Mirror Vol.1, pp. 79–80
  • The Poets of the People. I. Allan Ramsay. By D. M. M. — 1846 Aug 15, in The Mirror Vol.1, pp. 109–111
  • The Poets of the People. II. Robert Burns. By D. M. M. — 1846 Sep 19, in The Mirror Vol.1, pp. 189–190
  • The Emigrant's Wives. A Passage from Real Life. Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Sep 26, in The Mirror Vol.1, pp. 203–208
  • The Story of Erminia. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1847 May, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblée Vol.26, pp. 284–286
  • Elspeth Sutherland. (A Tale.) By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1847 Jun, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblée Vol.26, pp. 327–332
  • Great and Little Heroines. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1847 Sep, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblée Vol.27, pp. 140–144
  • A Sketch of Domestic Life. (From the German of Heinrich Zebokke.) Signed D.M.M. — 1847 Sep 11, 18, 25, in Sharpe's London Magazine Vol.4, pp. 315–317, 332–334, 342–344
  • The Peace-Maker. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1848 Feb, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblée Vol.28, pp. 66–71
  • Poets of the People—Robert Bloomfield. Signed D. M. M. — 1848 Mar, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblée Vol.28, pp. 172–173
  • A Meditation for the Times. Signed D. M. M. — 1855 Feb, in Hogg's Instructor Vol.4, p. 129
  • Running Away. A Schoolmaster's Story. Signed Author of "John Halifax, Gentleman." — 1868 Dec, in Our Young Folks Vol.4, Boston, pp. 734–743
  • In the Happy Valley. Signed Author of "John Halifax, Gentleman." — 1869 Jul, in Our Young Folks Vol.5, Boston, pp. 444–449
  • Le Boeuf Gras. Signed Author of "John Halifax, Gentleman." — 1869 Dec, in Our Young Folks Vol.5, Boston, pp. 825–831
  • In Bolton Woods. Signed Author of "John Halifax, Gentleman." — 1871 Jan, in Our Young Folks Vol.7, Boston, pp. 42–48

The following all first appeared in periodicals before the books:

  • Little Lizzie and the Fairies; Sunny Hair's Dream; The Young Ship-Carver; Arndt's Night Underground — in The Playmate. A Pleasant Companion for Spare Hours, 1847–48.
  • A Family in Love, as A Family on the Wing, in Chambers's Journal, 1856 May 3
  • A Garden Party, in Good Cheer, 1867 Christmas
  • His Little Mother, in The Graphic, 5–19 Oct 1878
  • Poor Prin. A True Story, in The Graphic, 11 October 1879
  • An Island of the Blest, in The Sunday Magazine, 1880
  • My Sister’s Grapes, in Harper’s Young People, New York, 1880 Dec 14, and in Life and Work, 1881 Aug
  • A Ruined Palace, in The Sunday Magazine, 1881
  • How She Told a Lie, in The Sunday Magazine, 1881
  • A City at Play, and The First Sunday at Lent were incorporated in the book: Fair France. Impressions of a Traveller, as Chapters 3 & 4 respectively.

Early Poems

  • Song of the Hours. Signed D. M. M. — 1841 Oct, in The Dublin University Magazine Vol.18, pp. 442–443
  • Verses. By D. M. M. — 1844, in Friendship's Offering of Sentiment and Mirth, pp. 216–217
  • A March Song. Signed D. M. M. — 1844 Apr, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.20, p. 245
  • Songs for Stray Airs—No. I. The Mourner's Hope of Immortality. (A Funeral Hymn.) Signed D. M. M. — 1844 Apr, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.20, p. 245
  • Songs for Stray Airs—No. II. The Shepherd's Wife. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1844 May, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.20, p. 275
  • Songs for Stray Airs—No. III. Carolans War-Cry. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1844 Jun, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.20, p. 335
  • "Forgive One Another." By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1844 Jun, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.20, p. 346
  • Songs for Stray Airs—No. IV. A Barcarole. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1844 Jul, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.21, p. 32
  • Good Seed. Signed D. M. M. — 1845 Jul 5, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.4, p. 16
  • Songs for Stray Airs—No. V. Caoinne Over an Irish Chieftain. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1844 Aug, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.21, p. 76
  • The Country Sabbath. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1844 Aug, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.21, p. 101
  • Songs for Stray Airs—No. VI. A Fire-Side Song. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1844 Sep, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.21, p. 168
  • The Six Maidens. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1845 Jan, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.22, pp. 26–27
  • England's Welcome to American Genius. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1845 Apr, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.21, p. 200
  • The Garden in the Churchyard. Signed D. M. M. — 1845 Sep 20, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.4, p. 192
  • The Motherless Children. Addressed to the Infants left by Madame Leontine Genoude. (From the French of De Lamartine.) Signed D. M. M. — 1845 Oct 18, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.4, p. 256
  • The Poet's Mission. Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Jan 3, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.5, p. 16
  • Prayers for all Men. (From "Les Feuilles d'Automne" of Victor Hugo.) Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Jan 31, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.5, p. 80
  • "Hateful Spring!" (From the "Chansons" of Beranger.) Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Feb 7, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.5, p. 96
  • The Maiden and the Rose. (From the French of Chateaubriand.) Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Mar 7, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.5, p. 160
  • A Greek Allegory. Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Mar 28, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.5, p. 208
  • The Troubadour and his Swallow. (From the French.) Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Apr 11, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.5, p. 240
  • A Hymn. (From Lamartine's "Harmonies Poètiques.") Signed D. M. M. — 1846 May 30, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.5, p. 352
  • The Water-Lily. Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Jul 18, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.6, p. 48
  • A Mother's Resignation. Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Jul 25, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.6, p. 64
  • The Chrysanthemum. Signed D. M. M. — 1846 Dec 26, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.6, p. 416
  • Happiness. Signed D. M. M. — 1847 Jan 30, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.7, p. 80
  • Robert Bruce Crowned by the Countess of Buchan. Signed D. M. M. — 1847 Feb 13, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.7, p. 112
  • The Cry of the Earth. Signed D. M. M. — 1847 May 22, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.7, p. 336
  • On the Portrait of Lady Rachel Russell. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1847 Jul, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.27, frontispice
  • An Answer. Signed D. M. M. — 1847 Jul, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.27, p. 22
  • The Golden Rose. Signed D. M. M. — 1847 Jul 10, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.8, p. 32
  • Growing Old Together. Signed D. M. M. — 1847 Aug 21, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.8, p. 128
  • Memory. Signed D. M. M. — 1847 Oct 30, in Chambers's Edinburgh Journal New Series Vol.8, p. 288
  • The Tax-Gatherers. (From the French of Béranger.) Signed D. M. M. — 1847 Nov, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.27, p. 265
  • The Dream of the Orphan. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1847, in Orphanhood. Free-will offerings to the Fatherless, pp. 81–82
  • Dante's Meeting with Casello in Purgatory. (From "Il Purgatorio"—Canto II.) Signed D. M. M. — 1848 Jan, in The New Monthly Belle Assemblee Vol.28, pp. 25–26
  • The African Slave;
  • The Greek Mother;
  • The Battle of Langsyde; and three other unknown poems. By Dinah Maria Mulock — 1848 Dec, in THE DRAWING-ROOM TABLE-BOOK. An Annual for Christmas and the New Year, pp. 13, 34, 76
  • Militia Volunteers. Signed D. M. M. — 1855 Mar, in Hogg's Instructor Vol.4, p. 240

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Garnett 1894.
  2. ^ Dinah Craik, The Unkind Word & Other Stories. London: Hurst and Blackett, Publishers, 13, Great Marlborough Street, 1870. Craik criticizes Malkin for acceding to Thomas' requests to be educated at an early age, believing it contributed to his death; but she also admits that Malkin's other sons did well in life.
Attribution

External links[edit]