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Caulfeild, Sophia Frances Anne (1824-1911)

Title page of Sophia Caulfeild's Dictionary of Needlework, first published in 1882. Title page of Sophia Caulfeild's Dictionary of Needlework, first published in 1882.

Sophia Frances Anne Caulfeild was born in Teighmouth (Ireland) in 1824, the daughter of Edwin-Toby Caulfeild and Frances Sally (née Irwin). The Caulfeilds were a local, aristocratic family of Anglo-Irish origins based in Raheenduff (County Wexford, Ireland).

Sophia had three brothers and sisters, one of whom became a vicar. She never married and later went to live in Upper Norwood, London. Among her many interests was needlework and she became well-known for The Dictionary of Needlework, published in 1882, together with Blanche C. Saward. This book is regarded as a ‘bible’ for students of needlework and the history of needlework itself. There is also a companion volume, Supplement to the Dictionary of Needlework (London: Gill), which came out in 1887.

The Dictionary was published in serial form in 1881 and 1882, and with the publication of the last of the series, all parts could be sent back to the publisher for binding. The Dictionary was republished in 1903.

Her other publications include:

  • Avenele, and other Poems (1870; London: Longmans and Co.)
  • Desmond, and other Poems (1870; London: Longmans and Co.)
  • The Lives of the Apostles, Their Contemporaries and Successors (1886; London: James Pott)
  • A Directory of Girls' Societies, Clubs and Unions Conducted on Unprofessional Principles (1886).
  • True Philosophy: A Reply to Certain Statements Made in "Scientific Religion," by Mr. Laurence Oliphant (1888; London: Hatchards).
  • House Mottoes and Inscriptions: Old and New (1902: London: E. Stock)
  • The Home Nurse, A Handbook For Sickness and Emergencies, Formerly Known As 'Sick Nursing At Home' (1903; London).
  • The Voice of the Fathers: Their Erudition and Unanimity (1905; with others; London: S. C. Brown, Langham & Company)

Source: BURKE, Bernard J. (1852), A Genealogical and Heraldic Dictionary of the Landed Gentry of Great Britain and Ireland for 1852, London: Colburn and Co. Vol. I, p. 198.

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Last modified on Tuesday, 14 March 2017 21:35