31 Days of Notable Women- Marjorie Pickthall, child prodigy, poet

Marjorie L. C. Pickthall was the daughter of Arthur C. Pickthall, an electrical engineer, and Helen Mallard, who had emigrated to Toronto in 1890 from England, when their child was about seven years of age. Marjorie Lowrey Christie Pickthall was born in London,England, the 14th of September, 1883, she achieved fame earlier in life than most poets. For a decade her poems and short stories have appeared in leading periodicals of England, the United States and Canada: and in the autumn of 1913, the University Magazine,Montreal, and John Lane, the Bodley Head, issued a volume of her collected verse, entitled A Drift of Pinions.

For once the reviewers and critics generally were of one opinion that the work was the product of genius undefiled and radiant, dwelling in the realm of pure beauty and singing with perfect naturalness its divine message. It was evident that a genius of a rare order had appeared in Canadian literature.

In 1913, Miss Pickthall was assistant librarian in Victoria College but the close confinement not agreeing with her health, she resigned and went to England to visit relatives. She was there when the Great War broke out and at once became interested in grey knitting and other matters pertaining to the soldiers. In 1915, Little Hearts, her first novel, was published and was very favorably received by the best critics. 



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