Emily Dickinson biography:
Very little is known of
Emily Elizabeth Dickinson as the American poet always kept to herself
and lived a life of solitude. She was born on 10th December 1830 at
Amherst, Massachusetts to Edward and Emily Norcross Dickinson. She had
an older brother, Austin, and younger sister named Lavinia.
From 1834 – 1847, Emily Dickinson studied at the Amherst Academy, an
academic institution that was co-founded by her grandfather, Samuel
Fowler Dickinson. In 1847, she studied at the Hadley Female Seminary
(now known as Mount Holyoke College) but returned to Amherst only
after a year, and began her life of solitude.
After returning from the Seminary, Emily withdrew from all social
contact and refused to entertain guests. She chose to dress herself
only in white and spent most of her time inside her room. She started
writing poems at around this time. Her initial forays were
conventional but later on, she experimented until she developed her
own unique style.
The 1860s contributed immensely to Emily Dickinson’s writing style and
content. The US Civil War broke out in 1861; her closest friends (and
were also rumored to be objects of her affection) Samuel Bowles moved
to Europe for health reasons, and Charles Wadsworth was relocated to
San Francisco. In addition, she also had a persistent eye trouble.
Although these years were very tumultuous for Dickinson, this could
also be considered as the most productive period of her life. During
this time, Emily Dickinson wrote around 800 poems.
Emily Dickinson never married and died on May 15, 1886. Her poems were
published posthumously by her sister, Lavinia in 1886. During her
life, only seven poems were published, but Emily Dickinson has penned
almost 2,000 poems.