Wolverhampton BTW

Anna Eliza Bray

Bray, Anna Eliza née Kempe, previously Stothard, 1790—1883

Anna Kempe was born at Newington, Surrey, daughter of John Kempe, porteur d'or at the Royal Mint, and his wife Ann, née Arrow. After a brief career as an actress, she married her drawing tutor, Charles Alfred Stothard (1786-1821; ODNB), in February 1818. Their honeymoon in France provided material for her first book, Letters Written during a Tour. In 1822, Anna Stothard married the Revd Edward Atkyns Bray (1778-1857; ODNB) after Charles Stothard died in a fall. Her subsequent career as a novelist attracted the attention of Robert Southey who suggested the subject for A Description, which takes the form of a series of letters to Southey. Anna Bray published one other travel book after a tour of Switzerland in 1839: The Mountains and Lakes of Switzerland; with Descriptive Letters of Other Parts of the Continent (3 vols, 1841). She continued to publish novels and other prose writings until her death in 1883.

Sources:

Schneller, Beverly E. ‘Bray, Anna Eliza (1790–1883)’, ODNB.

Texts

Title Published
Letters Written during a Tour through Normandy, Brittany, and Other Parts of France 1820
A Description of the Part of Devonshire Bordering on the Tamar and the Tavy 1836