Neglected Women Writers’ Month: V.H. Friedlaender


The most elusive author which I have chosen for this project is V.H. Friedlaender.  One can find her books for sale, and some of the reviews and poetry snippets which she wrote, but there is very little biographical information which I have been able to locate.  The lack of facts can hopefully be made up with the following snippets which I have collected about her.

“We shall not travel by the road we make.
Ere day by day the sound of many feet
Is heard upon the stones that now we break,
We shall but come to where the cross-roads meet.

For us the heat by day, the cold by night,
The inch-slow progress and the heavy load,
And death at last to close the long, grim fight
With man and beast and stone: for them-the road.

For them the shade of trees that now we plant,
The safe smooth journey and the ultimate goal-
For us day-labour, travail of the soul.

And yet the road is ours, as never theirs;
Is not one thing on us alone bestowed?
For us the master-joy, oh, pioneers-
We shall not travel, but we make the road!”
(‘Road Makers’)

– Reviews and stories of V.H. Friedlaender, from such publications as The Atlantic Monthly, The Century Magazine, and Harpers Monthly can be found here.
– Her 1922 poem, ‘Bus-Ride in a Fog’, can be read here.
– A suffragette autograph album, featuring her poem ‘The Road’, is discussed here.


One thought on “Neglected Women Writers’ Month: V.H. Friedlaender

  1. I have recently become aware that this amazing lady is a former pupil of the School whose Alumnae Association I manage! She was at St Mary’s Hall, Brighton from 1889-1896. A quotation of hers was used in an Autograph book of one of our 1962 leavers by a friend and fellow pupil. It is taken from her work “Purpose” and goes “God, to what end is this distress That all men suffer by Thy design? Many grapes, my son, must be trodden in the press, To make one cup of wine”

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