Margaret Gatty

Margaret Gatty was born in 1809 as the second daughter of Rev Alexander Scott and Mary Frances Scott.

Margaret Gatty

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Margaret grew up in the Vicarage at Burnham on Crouch where her father was curate and Vicar of the neighbouring Parish of Southminster.

The remarkable life of Rev Scott is listed on another page in this site

Mary Scott died when Margaret was only 2 years old which meant that she was brought up by her father with occasional stays with relatives.

Margaret and her sister Horatia were much influence by their father and from an early age learnt to paint and to read classical books in several languages.

In 1816 the family moved to a Catterick where life continued in similar terms to Burnham

Here life was difficult as she was forced to accept most of the responsibility for family life as her father was often ill and at other time focused on his studies and her sister was unable or unwilling to participate.

In 1837 a major change occurred in that 31 year old  Margaret met a young 24 year old Curate called Alfred Gatty and there was an immediate attraction.

When Alfred asked for permision to marry Margaret, Rev Scott denied permission mirroring the situation when he had asked permission to marry Margaret's mother.

After pressure from Margaret the Rev Scott gave approval  for the marriage and Margaret Married Alfred Gatty in July 1939.

The newly married couple were presented with the living at Ecclesfield near Sheffield

For the next few years Margaret lived a busy life with visits to her father at Catterick and giving birth to eight children.

Her fathers death in 1840 brought her creative talents to the fore and with her husband she wrote the life history of Rev A J Scott which was published by Saunders and Ottley

Although the book was not a big seller it stimulated the desire to right and started a flow of books that received critical acclaim.

The acclaim even reached the heights of Alfred Tennyson and Lewis Carroll who visited the Gatty's on several occasions to discuss literature.

1851

The Fairy Godmothers

1855-1871 Five series of the Parables from nature
1857 Proverbs Illustrated
1858 Legendary Tales
1858

The poor incumbent

1859 Aunt Judy's tales
1860 The human face divide
1860 Travels and adventures of Rev Joseph Wolff
1861

An Irish Holiday

1862 Aunt Judy's letters
1863 History of British seaweeds
1864 History of a bit of bread
1864 Children's introduction to anatomy and physiology
1865 Domestic pictures and tales
1872 Book of emblems
1872 Book of sundials

 

Like her father before her Margaret encouraged her children to take up the arts and her second child Julia Horatia became an even more acclaimed writer of children's books that her mother.

Margaret developed ill health on died on 4 October 1873 being laid to rest in Ecclesfield churchyard near her father

The lives of Margaret and  Julia are remembered by a window in Ecclesfield church

An advertisment from 1859  

 

 

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