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Armstrong Browning library kicks off birthday celebrations

April 11, 1997

Armstrong Browning Library

kicks off birthday celebrations

Matthew Lester / The Baylor Lariat

Ann Miller reads 'Home Thoughts from Abroad' by Robert Browning at the Browning Birthday Celebration.

By Randolph Tjahjono

Lariat Reporter

The Armstrong Browning Library sponsored a birthday celebration in memory of Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barret Browning Thursday afternoon.

The topic of discussion was 'The Brownings: Animal and the Natural World.' Five speakers gave a talk ranging on everything from Robert Browning's portrayal of mill horses in his poetry to reptilian references in Robert Browning's correspondence to Isa Bladgen after Elizabeth's death.

After the presentation of the papers, there were poetry readings and musical performances celebrating the works of the Browning couple.

Recently, the Armstrong Browning Library acquired rare manuscripts containing what are believed to be the last poems by Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barret Browning.

Dr. Mairi Rennie, director of Armstrong Browning, successfully bid on the items at an auction held in London.

'The bidding was fierce. Several internationally known Browning collectors would have liked these handwritten items,' she said.

According to Rennie, the Robert Browning manuscript contains a meditation of the transience of lie and presence of death. Also included in the material purchased by the University is a manuscript of the last poem written by Elizabeth Barret Browning before her death.

The Browning items were purchased through endowment proceeds from funds provided by members of the Armstrong Browning Library's Guardian Angel Organization, a group of supporters of the library.

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