Woman of the Century/Sarah Margaret Fuller Ossoli

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Woman of the Century
Sarah Margaret Fuller Ossoli

OSSOLI, Mme. Sarah Margaret Fuller, educator and philosopher, born in Cambridge, Mass., SARAH MARGARET FULLER OSSOLI. 23rd May, 1810, lost at sea 15th July, 1850. She received a broad education and early felt a deep interest in social questions. She learned French, German and the classics, and her associates in Cambridge were persons of culture, experience and advanced ideas. In 1833 the family removed to Groton, Mass., where she gave lessons to private classes in languages and other studies. Her father, Timothy Fuller, died of cholera, 26th September, 1835, and his death threw the family upon Margaret for support, and her plans for a trip to Europe were abandoned. In 1836 she went to Boston, where she taught Latin and French in A. Bronson Alcott's school, and taught private classes of girls in French, German and Italian. In 1837 she became a teacher in a private school in Providence, R. I., which was organized on Mr. Alcott's plan. She translated many works from the German and other languages. In 1839 she removed to Jamaica Plain, Mass.. and took a house on her own responsibility, to make a home for the family. The next year they returned to Cambridge. In 1839 she instituted in Boston her conversational class, which was continued for several years. She did much writing on subjects connected with her educational work. In 1840 she became the editor of "The Dial." which she managed for two years. Her contributions to the journal were numerous. Several volumes of translations from the German were brought out by her. In 1843 she went on a western tour with James Freeman Clarke and his artist-sister, and her first original work, "Summer on the Lakes," was the result of that trip. In 1844 she removed to New York City, where for two years she furnished literary criticisms for the "Tribune." In 1846 she published her volume. "Papers on Literature and Art." After twenty months of life in New York she went to Europe, She met in Italy, in 1847, Giovani Angelo, Marquis Ossoli, a man younger than she and of less intellectual culture, but a simple and noble man, who had given up his rank and station in the cause of the Roman Republic. They were married in 1847. Their son, Angelo Philip Eugene Ossoli, was born in Rieti, 5th September, 1848. After the fall of the republic it was neeessary for them to leave Rome, and Madame Ossoli, desiring to print in America her history of the Italian struggle, suggested their return to the United States. They sailed on the barque "Elizabeth" from Leghorn, 17th May, 1850. 'I he trip was a disastrous one. Capt. Hasty died of the small-pox and was buried off Gibraltar. Mme. Ossoli's infant son was attacked by the disease on 1 ith June, but recovered. On 15th July the "Elizabeth made the New Jersey coast at noon, and during a fog the vessel ran upon Fire Island and was wrecked. Madame Ossoli refused to be separated from her husband, and all three were drowned. The body of their child was found on the beach and was buried in the sand by the sailors, to be afterwards removed to Mount Auburn Cemetery, near Boston. The bodies of Marquis and Madame Ossoli were never found. Madame Ossoli was one of the most remarkable women of the century, and her death in middle life ended a career that promised much for humanity.