Memorial ephemera from Alfred Lord Tennyson's funeral

Description

Alfred Tennyson’s funeral, held at Westminster Abbey on 12 October 1892, was attended by thousands of mourners. Family, friends, acquaintances and members of the public filled the Abbey and lined the streets outside. 

This selection of mourning memorabilia includes a funeral admittance card and three memorial cards containing portraits and poetry. It was standard practice to issue memorial cards when any major public figure died and they were available for sale to the general public. Within the private sphere, too, memorial cards were used to announce and circulate news of bereavements. It was conventional to keep these cards as a personal memento. Note that all of these items are edged in black as typical of Victorian mourning stationary; it was customary to use mourning stationary until the mourning period (at least a year for adults) had passed. As well as providing an insight into the public response to Tennyson’s death, these material objects remind us that the cult of mourning was a lucrative business.

Full title:
In Memoriam. Alfred Tennyson, born August 6th, 1809, died October 6th, 1892. [In verse.]
Published:
estimated 1892, probably London
Format:
Ephemera
Creator:
Edwin Drew
Usage terms

We have been unable to locate the copyright holder in this material. Please contact copyright@bl.uk with any information you have regarding this item.

Held by
British Library
Shelfmark:
1889.d.1.(92.)

Full catalogue details

Related articles

An introduction to 'In Memoriam A.H.H.'

Article by:
Holly Furneaux
Theme:
Victorian poetry

Tennyson wrote 'In Memoriam A.H.H.' as a tribute to his beloved friend Arthur Henry Hallam, who died aged 22. Dr Holly Furneaux explores how the poem uses individual bereavement to grapple with broader questions of faith, meaning and nature.

Tennyson’s rise and fall

Article by:
Stephanie Forward
Theme:
Victorian poetry

When Tennyson died in 1892, 11,000 people applied for tickets to his funeral in Westminster Abbey. Dr Stephanie Forward considers the poet's huge popularity in the second half of the 19th century, and the decline of his reputation in the 20th.

'In Memoriam A.H.H.': composition and reception

Article by:
Stephanie Forward
Theme:
Victorian poetry

'In Memoriam A.H.H.', a tribute to Tennyson’s beloved friend Arthur Henry Hallam, was a defining poem of the Victorian period. Dr Stephanie Forward explores Tennyson’s composition process, and considers how the poem was received during Tennyson’s lifetime and into the 20th century.

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'In Memoriam A H H'

Created by: Alfred Lord Tennyson

A poignant tribute to Arthur Henry Hallam, this poem by Alfred Lord Tennyson (1809-1882) was written between 1833 ...