Amy Levy

Amy Levy (1861 - 1889) was a British-Jewish poet and novelist.

She was born in Clapham, London into a secular Jewish family. She was educated at Brighton High School, and studied at Newnham College, Cambridge; she was the first Jewish student at Newnham, when she arrived in 1879, but left after four terms.

Her circle of friends included Constance Black, Caroline Maitland, Eleanor Marx, Beatrice Potter, and Olive Schreiner. She wrote for periodicals, was well as poetry. Her novels were largely concerned with Jewish identity and mores in the England of her time (and were consequently controversial), and themes on the position of women.

She travelled widely in Europe. She is said to have fallen in love with Violet Paget (Vernon Lee), six years older than herself.

She had suffered from depression from an early age. She committed suicide by inhaling carbon monoxide, aged 27.

  • Xantippe and Other Verse (1881)
  • A Minor Poet and Other Verse (1884)
  • The Romance of a Shop (1888) novel
  • Reuben Sachs: A Sketch (1888) novel
  • A London Plane-Tree and Other Verse (1889)
  • Miss Meredith (1889) novel
  • The Complete Novels and Selected Writings of Amy Levy: 1861-1889. Edited by Melvyn New

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