Biography of Louise Imogen Guiney

ca. 1900

Louise Imogen Guiney (January 17, 1861 – November 2, 1920) was an American poet, essayist and editor, born in Roxbury, Massachusetts.


Louise Imogen Guiney
Photograph by Fred Holland Day (1893).

The daughter of Gen. Patrick R. Guiney, an Irish-born American Civil War officer and lawyer, and Jeannette Margaret Doyle, she was raised as a Christian and educated at a convent school and in Providence, Rhode Island, from which she graduated in 1879.

Over the next 20 years, she worked at various jobs, including serving as a postmistress and working in the field of cataloging at the Boston Public Library. She was a member of several literary and social clubs, and according to her friend Ralph Adams Cram was "the most vital and creative personal influence" on their circle of writers and artists in Boston (see Visionists).

In 1901, Guiney moved to Oxford, England, to focus on her poetry and essay writing. She soon began to suffer from illness and was no longer able to write poetry, instead concentrating on critical and biographical studies of Catholic poets and writers.[citation needed]

Guiney died of a stroke near Gloucestershire, England, at age 59, leaving much of her work unfinished.


  • Songs at the Start (1884, poetry)
  • Goose-Quill Papers (1885, essays)
  • The White Sail and Other Poems (1887, poetry)
  • Brownies and Bogles (1888, poetry)
  • Monsieur Henri: A Foot-Note to French History (1892, essays)
  • A Roadside Harp (1893, poetry)
  • A Little English Gallery (1895, essays)
  • Robert Louis Stevenson (1895, biography, with Alice Brown)
  • Lovers' Saint Ruth's and Three Other Tales (1895, short stories)
  • Nine Sonnets Written at Oxford (1895, poetry)
  • Patrins (1897, essays)
  • England and Yesterday (1898, poetry)
  • The Martyrs' Idyl and Shorter Poems (1899, poetry)
  • Robert Emmet (1904)
  • The Princess of the Tower (1906, poetry)
  • Blessed Edmund Campion (1908)
  • Happy Ending (1909, poetry, her collected verse)
  • Letters (1926, letters) (posthumously)
  • Recusant Poets (1939, ed., with Geoffrey Bliss) (posthumously)

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