Fun Facts Friday: Emma Lazarus

July 22, 2016

Emma Lazarus (22 July, 1849 – 19 November, 1887) was an American poet known for her 1883 sonnet The New Colossus which is inscribed on a bronze plaque being held by the Statue of Liberty.

Emma Lazarus.jpg
By T. Johnson – The New York Historical Society [1][2],
Public Domain,

1)      Ms. Lazarus was one of seven children born in New York.

2)      Poet Grace Seixas Nathan was the great-great grandmother of Ms. Lazarus

3)      Since early age, Ms. Lazarus studied American and British literature

4)      She loved the writing of Ralph Waldo Emerson and an admirer of political economist Henry George.

5)      She spoke English, German, French and Italian.

6)      After reading Daniel Deronda by George Eliot, Ms. Lazarus started taking interest in her Jewish roots

7)      She was an advocate for Jewish Russian refugees after the Russian pogroms

8)      Ms. Lazarus’ famous sonnet The New Colossus was written for and donated to an auction to raise funds to build the pedestal for the Statue of Liberty

9)      Rose Hawthorne Lathrop, Emma Lazarus’ good friend and daughter of Nathaniel Hawthorne and his wife, Sophia founded the Dominican Sisters of Hawthorne after she was inspired by The New Colossus

10)   In 2008 her home on West 10th Street in New York City was included in a map of Women’s Rights Historic Sites.

Zohar – Man of la Book

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