A servant with little formal education, Mary Leapor nonetheless left behind a substantial body of poetry and drama. Two volumes of her collected work were published posthumously as Poems upon Several Occasions (1748, 1751). Leapor’s poetry is especially interesting for its vivid portrayal of class relations. For example, “Crumble-Hall,” a long poem that plays on traditions and conventions of the country-house genre, is written from a servant’s perspective. Leapor also used the name Mira in her poetry to write frankly about her own struggles to balance her literary ambition with her class position. Leapor died of measles at age 24.
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