Phillis Wheatley

Phillis Wheatley Biography

Phillis Wheatley was the first published African American poet and first African-American woman whose writings helped create the genre of African American literature. Born in Gambia, she was made a slave at age seven. She was purchased by the Wheatley family of Boston, who taught her to read and write, and helped encourage her poetry.

The 1773 publication of Wheatley's Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral brought her fame, with figures such as George Washington praising her work. Wheatley also toured England and was praised in a poem by fellow African American poet Jupiter Hammon. Wheatley was emancipated by her owners after her poetic success, but stayed with the Wheatley family until the death of her former master and the breakup of his family.

Wheatley’s popularity as a ...

Phillis Wheatley Comments

Claudia Krizay 25 April 2011

One poet I am not crazy about is Phillis Wheatley Maybe it is because I can't relate to her work. I am not saying she is a bad poet- to others she might be great. Maybe I am the stupid one because her writing doesn't appeal to me- but I think no poet is loved by everyone and nobody is perfect. I am sure a lot of people dislike my poetry and I am interested in why they don't just as I am interested in why others do like it. It is all in the eyes of the beholder but Phillis Wheatley's poetry I just cannot relate to. I won't say why because other readers might call me a racist. But people have to be willing to accept negative comments as well as the positive ones! ! !

316 450 Reply
Sanskruti Siras 08 December 2011

thanks for the witty poem sir....

312 306 Reply
Linda Stroud 27 February 2006

This poem is awesome Phillis. You are a good poet, I really enjoyed thath one especially.Keep up the good work. Truly Awesome.............

368 155 Reply
Alex Galarneau 18 September 2013

Charisse, were you a slave? were you ripped from our family and forced into labor and beaten and raped? no. it is perfectly acceptable for a person to have an opinion about a poem that does not appeal to them. It does not make someone a racist at all. She didn't say she hated the poem because the author was black or that she thought that Phillis was a bad writer because of it. THANK YOU.

190 166 Reply
Non Manet In Æternum 02 December 2013

Alex Galarneau, unless you come from a slave ancestry, you have no way to empathize with Charisse's point of view. I think its people like you who poo poo the madness that transpired in much of slavery and holocaust. In other words, how can you put yourself into someone else's shoes when you don't have an iota of inclination into their history?

189 157 Reply
ava 11 January 2022

hii

1 0 Reply
a.m 11 January 2022

i like this

0 0 Reply
keyli 08 January 2021

fdurfr

1 0 Reply
tek 07 January 2021

no

1 1 Reply
Norma Watson 01 July 2020

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1 3 Reply

The Best Poem Of Phillis Wheatley

On Being Brought From Africa To America

'Twas mercy brought me from my Pagan land,
Taught my benighted soul to understand
That there's a God, that there's a Saviour too:
Once I redemption neither sought nor knew.
Some view our sable race with scornful eye,
"Their colour is a diabolic die."
Remember, Christians, Negro's, black as Cain,
May be refin'd, and join th' angelic train.

Phillis Wheatley Popularity

Phillis Wheatley Popularity

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