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The girl from Botany Bay

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Acclaim for Carolly Erickson

"Carolly Erickson is one of the most accomplished and successful historical biographers writing in English." -The Times Literary Supplement

The First Elizabeth

"Even more readable and absorbing than the justly praised works of Tuchman and Fraser. A vivid and eminently readable portrait of history's favorite Tudor." -The New York Times Book Review

"A masterpiece of narrative, a story so absorbing it is as hard to put down as a fine novel." -Los Angeles Times Book Review


"Gifted . . . breathless . . . heartbreaking . . . Erickson excels." -Chicago Tribune


"An intimate, richly detailed, and candid portrait . . . [Erickson's] scholarly insights combine superbly with a mastery of period manners more often found in the best historical fiction." -Kirkus Reviews

Mistress Anne

"Carolly Erickson is a most admirable biographer, and this book is highly enjoyable as well as being reliable and acute; indeed, it is popular historical biography at its best." --The Times (London)

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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID 0d4a0f9b-062d-e368-3468-5f8267a57615
Grouping Title girl from botany bay
Grouping Author erickson carolly
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2020-05-27 22:43:30PM
Last Indexed 2020-05-27 23:58:06PM

Solr Details

accelerated_reader_point_value 0
accelerated_reader_reading_level 0
author Carolly Erickson
author_display Erickson, Carolly
available_at_catalog Special Collections
collection_catalog Muirhead
detailed_location_catalog Special Collections - Muirhead
display_description A remarkable story of resilience, heartbreak, and ultimately triumph follows a young woman's international travels after she is deported to Botany Bay in Australia for stealing a woman's bonnet and manages to find her way home again after a long ordeal. On a moonless night in the early 1790s, prisoner Mary Bryant, her husband William, her two small children, and seven other convicts stole a twenty-foot longboat and slipped noiselessly out of Sydney Cove, Australia, eluding their captors. They sailed north, all the way to Indonesia, traveling some thirty-six hundred treacherous miles in ten weeks-- an incredible feat of seamanship. For a time, Mary and her companions were able to convince the local Dutch colonial authorities that they were survivors of a shipwreck, but eventually the truth emerged and they found themselves back in captivity, in irons, on their way to England for execution. In time, Mary's fateful journey would win her tremendous admiration. A woman once reviled as a criminal would become a London celebrity, ultimately finding forgiveness and freedom. In The Girl from Botany Bay, distinguished historian and biographer Carolly Erickson tells Mary Bryant's remarkable story at full length for the first time-- the story of a woman whose impoverished Cornwall childhood led to a life of outlaw daring and thievery, then to harsh imprisonment and exile. Erickson recounts Mary's bold ventures from her point of view, beginning with her conviction and death sentence for highway robbery. Reprieved, she was sent to New South Wales to serve out her time, one of dozens of female convicts chosen as sexual companions for the hundreds of male convicts destined for settlement in the remote continent of Australia. From Mary's perilous sea journey to Botany Bay and Sydney Cove, to the inhuman conditions at the penal colony, to the risky escape to the Indonesian island of Timor and the horrors of the sail back to England-- during which Mary's husband and two children died of disease-- the story is harrowing yet heroic. With the dramatic narrative skill for which she is acclaimed, Erickson brings Mary and her companions to life in compelling detail. All the dangers of seafaring adventure are here: violent storms, near drownings, severe hunger and thirst, and the perils of relentless exposure to sun, wind, and salt spray that left the convicts with their skin scraped raw and their strength leached away. When she finally landed in England and testified before the magistrate's court, Mary was magnificent in her own defense. No one had the heart to condemn her; had she not, through her suffering, paid for her crimes? Impressed by Mary's sturdy self-possession and courage, lawyer and author James Boswell came to her rescue, ensuring that "the Girl from Botany Bay," as the newspapers called her, was freed and able to begin a new life.
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id 0d4a0f9b-062d-e368-3468-5f8267a57615
isbn 9780471271406
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last_indexed 2020-05-28T04:58:06.019Z
lexile_score -1
literary_form Non Fiction
literary_form_full Non Fiction
local_callnumber_catalog Special Coll. 994.402 E682g
owning_library_catalog Nashville Public Library
owning_location_catalog Special Collections
primary_isbn 9780471271406
publishDate 2005
Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
overdrive:938b5b93-c17c-429d-8160-bb98a76b4b64 eBook eBook English John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. 2010
ils:CARL0000329627 Book Books English John Wiley & Sons, c2005. 234 p. ; 24 cm.
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subject_facet Bryant, Mary, -- b. 1765
Exiles -- Australia -- Botany Bay (N.S.W.) -- Biography
Penal colonies -- Australia -- Botany Bay (N.S.W.) -- History
Thieves -- England -- Cornwall (County) -- Biography
Women prisoners -- Australia -- Botany Bay (N.S.W.) -- Biography
title_display The girl from Botany Bay
title_full The Girl From Botany Bay
The girl from Botany Bay / Carolly Erickson
title_short The girl from Botany Bay
topic_facet Bryant, Mary
Penal colonies
Women prisoners