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Ann Morgan's Love: a pedestrian poem by Arthur Munby

Ann Morgan's Love is a verse depiction of Victorian poet Arthur Munby's own secret marriage with his serving maid, Hannah Cullwick. Munby was obsessed with big, literally dirty, working-class women, making them the subjects of many photographs and sketches. When he died, he left behind a box "not to be opened until 1950". It contained pictures of Cullwick and other materials which shed more light on the nature of their peculiar relationship.

One point I've not seen mentioned is that Munby chose to give his heroine his own initials. Was it part of his fantasy to be such a woman, not simply to participate in an relationship with one? His poem is much more concerned with the servant's imagined thoughts and feelings than those of her master.


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