Shadowing William: The Work of Dorothy Wordsworth

Addressing William’s Important Relationship

 Dorothy Wordsworth’s Journal, 15 April 1803 (via Numero Cinq Magazine)

Dorothy Wordsworth’s Journal, 15 April 1803 (via Numero Cinq Magazine)

It cannot be said that William Wordsworth did not benefit and significantly rely on his sister, Dorothy. A writer herself, she not only served as her brother’s companion but as the writer for his works - he would dictate and she would write. Their complicated relationship is conflated within a Romantic period and situated around the instances of their life, providing context to the content of their writing. Dorothy wrote primarily travelogues, diary entrees, whereas William was a profound poet who collaborated with other canonical Romantic poets and became a possible poster child for returning to Nature. Though she serves as a critical proponent of his life, Dorothy is only published posthumous; her contributions and sacrifices are heavily overlooked, and perhaps only well known through her diaries, travelogues, and journals. However, I will commend William’s care of his sister before his death in 1850, as she suffered from opium and laudanum addiction coupled with deteriorating mental health. Her contribution to his life would deserve as much.

Dorothy’s Life: The Companion of Her Brother