1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Blamire, Susanna

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BLAMIRE, SUSANNA (1747–1794), English poet, daughter of a Cumberland yeoman, was born at Cardew Hall, near Dalston, in January 1747. Her mother died while she was a child, and she was brought up by her aunt, a Mrs Simpson of Thackwood, who sent her niece to the village school at Raughton Head. Susanna Blamire’s earliest poem is “Written in a Churchyard, on seeing a number of cattle grazing,” in imitation of Gray. She lived an uneventful life among the farmers of the neighbourhood, and her gaiety and good-humour made her a favourite in rustic society. In 1767 her elder sister Sarah married Colonel Graham of Gartmore. “An Epistle to her friends at Gartmore” gives a playful description of the monotonous simplicity of her life. To her Perthshire visits her songs in the Scottish vernacular are no doubt partly due. Her chief friend was Catharine Gilpin of Scaleby Castle. The two ladies spent the winters together in Carlisle, and wrote poems in common. Susanna Blamire died in Carlisle on the 5th of April 1794. The poems which were not collected during her lifetime, were first published in 1842 by Henry Lonsdale as The Poetical Works of Miss Susanna Blamire, “the Muse of Cumberland,” with a memoir by Mr Patrick Maxwell. Some of her songs rank among the very best of north-country lyrics. “And ye shall walk in silk attire” and “What ails this heart o’ mine,” are well known, and were included in Johnson’s Scots’ Musical Museum.