English Historical and Biographical Writer
1796 – 1874 A.D.
Miss Strickland occupied a field almost all her own; viz., the writing of the lives of royalty and especially the female rulers.
She began writing historical romances in verse form, something after the manner of Sir Walter Scott. Worcester Field is one of them.
She next turned to the writing of prose histories, especially adapting them to the young. Here she gained the quality of being, first of all, interesting. Pilgrims of Walsingham and Tales and Stories from History belong to this period.
The next step was cut into her own field. Her reputation was established by the first book in the line of royal biography, The Lives of the Queens of England, the list extending from Matilda of Flanders to Queen Anne. In this work, as in some others, she was assisted by her sister Elizabeth.
Agnes was a strong partisan for royalty and the Church, and yet she does not seem to have allowed her sympathies to warp her judgment.
Her pictures of manners and customs are a valuable contribution to our literature. She edited the Letters of Mary, Queen of Scots, and as she was a firm believer in the innocence of the queen, she ardently championed her cause. Later she wrote Lives of the Queens of Scotland, Lives of the Bachelor Kings of England, Lives of Seven Bishops, and Lives of the Last Four Stuart Princesses. Part of this period was employed in producing an abridged version of her Queens of England.
Toward the close of her life she received a civil list pension of one hundred pounds in recognition of her merits.
In this book about women, Agnes Strickland certainly deserves a place for having so industriously written about royal women, placing it in a readable form for coming generations.
It is interesting to observe that the first two stages of her literary work were of almost unconscious preparation for her distinguishing efforts.
Reference: Woman: Her Position, Influence, and Achievement Throughout the Civilized World published by the King-Richardson Co. in 1903.