Emily Anne Eliza Shirreff

Emily Anne Eliza Shirreff

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Emily Anne Eliza Shirreff

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Emily Anne Eliza Shirreff (3 November 1814 – 20 March 1897) was a pioneer in the movement for the higher education of women and the development of the Froebelian principles in England.



She was born on 3 November 1814, the second of four daughters and two sons born to Rear-Admiral William Henry Shirreff (1785–1847) and Elizabeth Anne Shirreff. She was very close to her sister Maria Shirreff , with whom she collaborated with on educational and writing projects.


Emily and her sisters were educated from an early age by a French governess called Adele Piqet, who had a limited education. In the 1820s the family lived in France where the father was stationed.

At the age of 14 she was sent to a boarding school in Paris but the rough conditions at the school affected Emily’s poor health and she was removed a year later. In 1829, her father took command of HMS Warspite and moved his family to Avranche in Lower Normandy. In 1831 her father was appointed to Gibraltar and did not think it his daughters needed another governess, bringing their formal...
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