Charles Tennyson Turner

(1808-1879 / England)

Biography of Charles Tennyson Turner

Charles (Tennyson) Turner is recognized as an accomplished and thoughtful sonneteer in his own right; his work also provides an interesting gloss on that of his younger brother, Alfred Tennyson. Their upbringing was the same; both were serious writers. Charles concentrated on one genre and earned the admiration of a few, while Alfred explored all sorts of poetic forms and became the most famous writer of the Victorian age.

Charles Tennyson was the second son of the Reverend George Clayton Tennyson, rector of Somersby and Bag Enderby, Lincolnshire, and Elizabeth Fytche Tennyson. He was born in Somersby rectory, and within eleven years he had five younger brothers and four younger sisters, as well as an older brother, Frederick. Charles's favorite was Alfred, who was thirteen months younger than he, and they shared an early interest in writing poetry along with all the other activities of a rural childhood. They also shared an attic room with Frederick, Charles's senior by thirteen months, where they studied, slept, and exercised on an exposed wooden beam.

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Letty's Globe

WHEN Letty had scarce pass'd her third glad year,
   And her young artless words began to flow,
One day we gave the child a colour'd sphere
   Of the wide earth, that she might mark and know,
By tint and outline, all its sea and land.
   She patted all the world; old empires peep'd
Between her baby fingers; her soft hand
   Was welcome at all frontiers. How she leap'd,
   And laugh'd and prattled in her wo

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