Anne, Lady Halkett



George Ballard, Memoirs of Several Ladies of Great Britain (Oxford, 1752).


Lady Anne Halkett, Selected Self-Writings, ed. Suzanne Trill (Aldershot, 2007).


Lady Anne Halkett (née Murray) is known for her autobiography and for fourteen volumes of personal diary entries and religious meditations, all of which are preserved in her autograph manuscripts. According to her early biographer ‘S.C.’ in The Life of the Lady Halkett (Edinburgh, 1701) there were originally twenty-one folio and quarto manuscript volumes of meditations, composed between 1644 and the late 1690s, together with ‘about thirty stitched Books, some in Folio, some in 4to, most of them of 10 or 12 sheets, all containing occasional Meditations’. Brief descriptions of all twenty-one of the manuscript volumes are given in Ballard (1752), pp. 373-8 (for untraced volumes see *HaA 16-22). The respective surviving series of Autobiography (*HaA 1) and Meditations (*HaA 2-15) complement each other in the light they throw on a highly devout aristocratic lady who outlived all her children as well as her husband. The identity of the hand in these manuscripts can be verified from a few largely autograph letters she wrote to James Kennoway and others (HaA 23-26).

Peter Beal