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It's an auto tour, clearly signposted with brown shingles, along a 16-kilometre circuit south and east of Banbridge and in the shadow of the famous Mountains of Mourne.Further info on the route can be found here.
This is where Patrick Brunty (the name change came later) taught school (and romanced one of his students!) and preached his first sermon after he was ordained in 1807.
"Patrick was a very talented man in his own right. The girls got the talent from the father; it was in the genes," says Jason Diamond of Banbridge District Council, who helps publicize the tour. "Here's a man who came from a two-room stone cottage in Ireland and he produced not one but three of the greatest authors in the canon of famous literature." [...]
One of the schoolhouses where Patrick taught, at Drumballyroney, has been restored to its late 18th-century appearance. There's a blackboard, desks, manikins of a teacher and students and, rather incongruously, a wedding dress in a glass case.
"That's a replica of Charlotte's wedding dress," says Diamond. "Notice how thin she was."
Nearby is the church where Patrick preached his first sermon after returning from his university schooling in Cambridge. This building, now deconsecrated, has also been restored to look as it did in Patrick's time.
The original Glascar School, where Patrick first taught, was long ago replaced by a more modern building. As we view it, Diamond tells how Patrick was dismissed from his post there because he and a student had become too fond of each other.
Not as serious as it seems, however, for Diamond explains that the girl was a senior and just two years younger than her 20-year-old teacher.
Our next stop is the cottage, still standing, that was the childhood home of Patrick's mother, Alice McClory. Her parents disapproved of the romance so she and Hugh Brunty eloped.
On, lastly, to the Brunty birthplace. Only the ruins of the two-roomed cottage in a glen at Emdale exist now. The site is cared for by the Brontë Homeland Trust and a plaque marks the spot.
The district council has provided a picnic site along the route, with views across the rolling hills to the Mountains of Mourne, the sights Patrick Brunty would have seen. It's unlikely he would ever have stopped here, however, for the site was a shebeen, an illegal drinking den, in his time. (Mitchell Smyth)
It’s that classic dilemma that we see in Jane Austen and Brontë, a woman who is fleeing something and falls in love with two very different kinds of men; one if the more respectable upstanding nice guy while the other is more roughish and slightly unsuitable. Of course they always fall for the unsuitable one, sometimes with heartbreaking and tragic consequences. (Helen Earnshaw)Poet Juan Gelman refers to Emily Brontë in an interview again. From Rebelión:
Como la Brontë que escribió entre otras cosas, una novela en la que describió como nadie el mal del amor, una mujer a la que no se le conoció pasión alguna, y sin embargo, escribió ese libro. (Silvia Arana) (Translation)MeriNews has several recommendations for young readers:
The readers who are diabetic to such candy sweet stuff and demand at least a nagging mother-in-law or an ex-lover can read books like love story by Erich Segal or Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, one of the Brontë sisters. (Chhavi Mishra)Listverse looks into the eating habits of several writers, including Charlotte Brontë.
Charlotte Brontë’s Poverty PorridgeFalse myths and out-of-context references are always so eye-catching, aren't they? The truth is, that's what they ate at Cowan Bridge. As has been proved time and again, their diet at home was healthy and varied.
The Brontë sisters did not exactly grow up in the lap of luxury. If they were given any food at all on a particular day, it would be prepared in such a way as to render it almost inedible. There were times of near-starvation, and whole days which would provide their stomachs with nothing more than burnt porridge and a chunk of bread.
Charlotte eventually turned her experiences with food—or lack thereof—into a recurring theme in her books. Heroines would starve themselves as a sign of strength—the gist being that the body does not need fuel, so long as the heart and mind are strong. (Sabine Bevers)