Maria Elizabeth Budden

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Maria Elizabeth Budden, (née Halsey, c. 1780–1832) was a novelist, translator and writer of didactic children's books, who frequently signed her work "M. E. B." or "A Mother". Her True Stories... series of history books for young people were perennially popular.

Source material[edit]

Little has come to light about Budden's life. Her most popular work throughout the first half of the 19th century was her anonymously published Always Happy!!: Or, Anecdotes of Felix and his Sister Serena. A Tale (1814). Also perennially popular were her True Stories... series of history books for young people (1819 onwards), and her novel Claudine: or Humility the Basis of All of the Virtues. A Swiss Tale (1822).[1]

These and other works of hers are available today in a number of print on demand editions, as they offer scholars source material on the history of education and upbringing. According to a modern account, Budden at her peak was writing more than one book a year for her publisher, John Harris.[2]

Like the poet and novelist Elizabeth Thomas, Budden has been associated tentatively with the pseudonymous "Mrs. Bridget Bluemantle", the author of nine novels published by the London Minerva Press between 1806 and 1818. However, Budden's Claudine... and "Mrs Bluemantle's" Claudine... are different novels.[3]


  1. ^ The Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature, 4th e. (Cambridge etc.: Cambridge UP, 2000), p. 2371.
  2. ^ Oxford Reference Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  3. ^ Deirdre Coleman: "Thomas, Elizabeth (1770/71–1855)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford: Oxford UP, 2004). Pay-walled. Retrieved 25 September 2010.

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