'How do I love thee? Let me count the ways'
Elizabeth Barrett Browning was a poet of passion, wit and conscience. She was also a woman who wrote to speak the truth about everything she knew - and she knew just what it was like to be a thinking woman in a society that wanted women to be weak. The eldest of twelve children, she wrote poetry from the age of eleven, and became a highly successful poet in her lifetime - and remains very much loved today.
She was also a strong advocate for human rights, campaigning to abolish slavery and child labour, and her three-part poem A Curse for a Nation is a powerful polemic against the slave trade.
'I heard an angel speak last night, and he said "write! Write a nation's curse for me, and send it over the western sea" '