Newnham College, Cambridge


Born in London, graduated from Newnham College, Cambridge, and living her adult life mainly at the family home, 7 Endsleigh Gardens, London, Amy Levy was a feminist Jewish poet and novelist of distinction. She published three volumes of verse, Xantippe and other Verse (1881), A Minor Poet and Other Poems (1884; 1894), and A London Plane-Tree and Other Verse (posthumously in 1889). She also brought out three novels in 1888, Miss Meredith, The Romance of a Shop, and what made her notorious, Reuben Sachs, a story of greed and promiscuity in London Jewish life. Exhaustion and depression were factors in her suicide, at only 27 years old, as a result of breathing in charcoal fumes at her home. Melvyn New has edited The Complete Novels and Selected Writings of Amy Levy, 1861-1889 (Gainsville: University Press of Florida, 1993; PR 4886 L25A12). For a short life, see Edward Wagenknecht, Daughters of the Covenant: Portraits of Six Jewish Women (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1983; E 184 J5W14 Robarts Library).