Only for the Eye of a Friend: The Poems of Annis Boudinot Stockton
Known among the Middle Atlantic intelligentsia and literati as a witty and versatile writer, considered by George Washington and the Chevalier de La Luzerne a gracious and elegant host, Annis Boudinot Stockton (1736-1801) wrote over a hundred poems on the most important political and social issues of her day.
"Only for the Eye of a Friend" was the name Stockton gave a manuscript book of poems that surfaced in 1985 and at once tripled the number of her known works. Before the discovery of this copybook, Stockton was known to have written about 40 poems. Now, Carla Mulford has brought together over 125 of Stockton's works, including her published pieces and the newly found cache of poems in manuscript, to form this unprecedented collection. Mulford includes an introduction treating Stockton's life, with particular attention to the ways in which her poetry reveals both aspects of eighteenth-century culture and the expectations placed upon women of the Anglo-American elite.
Only for the Eye of a Friend brings back into public view the works of a poet whose published works and manuscripts earned her, in her day, a wide audience among colonists and international readers alike. The quality and quantity of Stockton's literary output makes her an apt counterpart to her seventeenth-century predecessor Anne Bradstreet and the nineteenth-century poet Emily Dickinson.
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Manuscript Sources and This Text
To Richard John Stockton Esqr inclosing
An invitation ode to a young Lady in New York
On hearing of the out powering of the divine spirit
The question upon being told in Jest by
On hearing that General Warren was killed
Elegy on the death of Mrs Dickinson The event
Acrostic for Georgeana Cuthbert
To Miss Mary Stockton an epistle upon some
After a night of perplexing dreams
was not meant
Lines To My Brother from a pavillion in
Soliliguy in a sleepless night
A sudden production of Mrs Stocktons in one
An elegiack Ode on the 28th day of February 1782
Elegy on the death of Miss Chandler
Epistle to General Washington May 261787
Impromptu on the morning of my sons weding
An extemporal Ode in a Sleepless Night By a Lady
an Ode 81
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