Ruth Bedford

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Ruth Bedford (1882 – 1963) was an Australian poet, playwright and fiction writer.


Born in Petersham, Sydney, to Alfred Percival Bedford and Agnes Victoria Stephen, daughter of Sir Alfred Stephen, an influential chief justice, whose family she wrote about in her humorous book A Family Chronicle (1954).[1] Ruth Bedford and her sisters Sylvia and Alfreda were educated at home by governesses. Bedford proved a talented verse writer from an early age: her first book, Rhymes by Ruth was published when she was eleven years old in 1893 (revised and reprinted 1896).[2] In 1931, Ruth Bedford established the Sydney PEN Centre in collaboration with her friend, the poet Dorothea Mackellar.[3]




  • Rhymes (1893)
  • Sydney at Sunset and Other Verses (1911)
  • Rosycheeks and Goldenhead (1914)
  • Fairies and Fancies (1929) children's poetry
  • The Learner and Other Verses (1937)
  • Who's Who in Rhyme and Without Reason (1948)


  • Think of Stephen: a family chronicle (1954)


  1. ^ Australian Poets and Their Works, by William Wilde, Oxford University Press, 1996
  2. ^ Australian Dictionary of Biography
  3. ^ The Quarterly Sydney PEN, issue 126 – november 2006