In Nature's Name: An Anthology of Women's Writing and Illustration, 1780-1930

An excerpt from
In Nature's Name
An Anthology of Women's Writing and Illustration, 1780-1930
Edited by Barbara T. Gates


High Waving Heather
Emily Brontë

High waving heather, 'neath stormy blasts bending,
Midnight and moonlight and bright shining stars;
Darkness and glory rejoicingly blending,
Earth rising to heaven and heaven descending,
Man's spirit away from its drear dongeon sending,
Bursting the fetters and breaking the bars.

All down the mountain sides, wild forest lending
One mighty voice to the life-giving wind;
Rivers their banks in the jubilee rending,
Fast through the valleys a reckless course wending,
Wider and deeper their waters extending,
Leaving a desolate desert behind.

Shining and lowering and swelling and dying,
Changing for ever from midnight to noon;
Roaring like thunder, like soft music sighing,
Shadows on shadows advancing and flying,
Lightning-bright flashes the deep gloom defying,
Coming as swiftly and fading as soon.

December 13, 1836.
The Complete Poems of Emily Jane Brontë.
Ed. C. W. Hatfield. New York: Columbia University Press, 1941. 31.


From the late eighteenth to the early twentieth century, hundreds of British women wrote about and drew from nature. Some—like Beatrix Potter, who wrote natural history about hedgehogs as well as stories about rabbits—are still familiar today. But others have all but disappeared from view. Barbara Gates recovers these lost works in this anthology. Here online are just a few of the riches of In Nature's Name.

To the left is "High Waving Heather" by Emily Brontë. You may also read a satiric drama "Science in Excelsis: A New Vision of Judgement" by Frances Power Cobbe and an excerpt from the travel account The Indian Alps and How We Crossed Them by Nina Mazuchelli.

"Gates's splendid new anthology, is packed with treasures and discoveries. Learned, lavishly illustrated and meticulously annotated, the book is bound to appeal to a range of readers, from feminist scholars to historians of science, from students of Romanticism, Victorianism and modernism to lovers of what one of the nineteenth-century authors represented here described as that 'charming beautifier Dame Nature."—Sandra M. Gilbert, coeditor of The Norton Anthology of Literature by Women



Copyright notice: ©2002 Excerpted from page 390 of In Nature's Name: An Anthology of Women's Writing and Illustration, 1780-1930 edited by Barbara T. Gates, published by the University of Chicago Press. ©2002 by the University of Chicago. All rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of U.S. copyright law, and it may be archived and redistributed in electronic form, provided that this entire notice, including copyright information, is carried and provided that the University of Chicago Press is notified and no fee is charged for access. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the consent of University of Chicago Press.

Barbara T. Gates, editor
In Nature's Name: An Anthology of Women's Writing and Illustration, 1780-1930
©2002, 700 pages, 28 halftones, 37 line drawings
Cloth $90.00 ISBN: 978-0-226-28444-6
Paper $27.50 ISBN: 978-0-226-28446-0

For information on purchasing the book—from bookstores or here online—please go to the webpage for In Nature's Name.

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