Anne Clifford and Her Bible
Abstract

Abstract:

While the scholarship dedicated to Lady Anne Clifford routinely discusses the importance of books in her writings and the Great Picture, there has been no sustained treatment of her use of the Bible. This article explores how Clifford read her Bible and how this reading shaped her writing and visual memorials as a whole. In systematically deploying a small corpus of biblical references principally from the Book of Psalms over the course of some sixty years, Clifford presents her struggle to claim and finally repossess her ancestral lands in providential terms. Clifford’s Biblicism allows her to express and sanction emotions and to justify acts of resistance while remaining a model of Stoicism and maintaining the decorum of her chosen genre—not life writing so much as divinely sanctioned family chronicle.