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Corvey 'Adopt an Author'

Regina Maria Roche

The Corvey Project at
Sheffield Hallam University



Annotated Bibliography for Regina Maria Roche

Primary Texts

Cross, Nigel (ed), 1984, The Royal Literary Fund: 1790-1918, London, World Mircofilms Publications, Reel 17, Case 590.

See letters written by Regina Maria Roche to The Royal Literary Fund, dated July 7 1831 and November 19 1831 – they provide the most detailed and accurate biographical information, with the added personal touch. Invaluable to anyone seeking to gain an insight into the life of Regina Maria Roche.

Roche, Regina Maria, 1789, 'Address' in The Vicar of Lansdowne, or Country Quarters, London, William Lane.

Roche’s appeal to critics to "disregard (her) humble TALE".

Roche, Regina Maria, 1968, Clermont, A Tale, London, The Folio Press.

Originally written in 1798, this novel was reprinted as part of ‘The Northanger Set of Jane Austen Horrid Novels’.

Roche, Regina Maria, 1828, ‘Preface’ to Contrast, London, Newman.

Gives some personal information.

Roche, Regina Maria, 1796, The Children of the Abbey, London, William Lane.

Contemporary Reviews

British Critic, 11, 1798, 77.

Review of The Children of the Abbey. The only review I could find of this best-selling novel, but as Natalie Schroeder mentioned in her article on the Rochean Canon, it was a novel that was "hardly mentioned by reviewers in 1796." Cites the novel as "very entertaining and well-written."

Critical Review, 24, 1798, 356.

Review of Clermont. Compares it to the gothic works of Ann Radcliffe but is not overly complementary, seeing the novel as unoriginal and full of the usual, predictable devices of this genre.

The Gentleman's Magazine, July 1845, 86.

Regina Maria Roche’s obituary. Cites her as a "distinguished writer" of "graceful and touching compositions", but contains many inaccuracies in relation to the dates of publication of her works.

Contemporary Authors

Austen Jane, 1990, Emma, Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Originally published in 1816. Harriet Smith mentions The Children of the Abbey as one of her favourite novels.




Austen, Jane, 1995, Northanger Abbey, London, Penguin.

Published posthumously in 1818 this novel was actually written at the time that Clermont was published. It satirises the gothic romance genre and cites Clermont as one of the ‘Horrid Novels’.

Austen, Jane, 1995, Pride and Prejudice, London, Penguin.

Originally published in 1813, this novel includes many incidences that bear close resemblance to Roche's The Children of the Abbey. For example, both novels have a character called Charles Bingley.

Radcliffe, Ann, 1993, A Sicilian Romance, Oxford, Oxford University Press.

One of Radcliffe’s early gothic romances, originally published anonymously in 1790, it makes an interesting comparison to Clermont.


Radcliffe, Ann, 1998, Mysteries of Udolpho, Oxford, Oxford University Press.

First published in 1794, this was the only contemporary gothic romance novel to surpass The Children of the Abbey’s popularity.

Secondary Texts

Blakey, Dorothy, 1939,The Minerva Press 1790-1820, Oxford, University of Oxford Press.

Gives the most reliable dates of publication of Regina Maria Roche's novels printed by The Minerva Press and a brief but specific account of The Children of the Abbey.

Botting, Fred, 1996, Gothic, London, Routledge.

See Chapter 4 'Gothic Writing in the 1790's', for an account of the gothic genre at this time and a discussion of The Children of the Abbey under the sub-heading 'Terror Narratives'.

Clery, Emma, 1995, The Rise of Supernatural Fiction 1762-1800, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

An interesting discussion of the supernatural in gothic and the potential for terror in the devices commonly employed by writers of this genre.

Howells, Coral Ann, 1978, Love, Mystery, and Misery; Feeling in Gothic Fiction, London, The Athlone Press.

See Chapter 4 'Minerva Press Fiction' for the single most specific discussion of The Children of the Abbey that I have come across.

Kelly, Gary, 1989, English Fiction of the Romantic Period 1789-1830, Harlow, Longman.

See chapter on Gothic Romances for an overview of the genre. Briefly mentions Regina Maria Roche as a writer of Gothic Romances.

MacCarthy, B.G., 1994, The Female Pen - Women Writers and Novelists 1621-1818, Cork, Cork University Press.

See Chapter 12 'The Gothic Novel', for a good overview of the genre.

Miles, Robert, 1993, Gothic Writing 1750-1820, A Genealogy, London, Routledge.

See the chapter on 'Narratives of Nurture' for a discussion of the conflicts with paternal nature in Clermont.

Moers, Ellen, 1977, Literary Women, New York, Oxford University Press.

See chapter 5 for an interesting discussion on the characteristics of Female Gothic.

Napier, Elizabeth R., 1987, The Failure of Gothic, Oxford, Clarendon Press.

Critiques Regina Maria Roche's Gothic style and its limitations.

Noel-Bentley, E.R., 'Jane Austen and Regina Maria Roche' in Notes and Queries, Maxwell, J.C. & Stanley, E.G. (eds), London, Oxford University Press, 22, 1975.

Points out similarities between Austen's Pride and Prejudice and Roche's The Children of the Abbey.

Poovey, Mary, 1984, The Proper Lady and the Woman Writer, London, University of Chicago Press.

Provides a useful background for the issue of the status of women and especially female writers in this period.

Roberts, Bette B., 'The Horrid Novels - The Mysteries of Udolpho and Northanger Abbey' in Gothic Fictions - Prohibition/Transgression, Graham, Kenneth W. (ed), 1989, New York, AMS Press.

Discussion of Jane Austen's 'Horrid Novels' and how they compare to the works of Ann Radcliffe and Jane Austen herself.

Sadleir, Michael, 1927, The Northanger Novels, Oxford, University of Oxford Press.

Discussion of Clermont.

Saintsbury, George, 1913, The English Novel, London, J.M. Dent and Sons.

Brief mention of Regina Maria Roche and The Children of the Abbey. Cites The Children of the Abbey as a "watered-down" version of Richardson’s work. This is a much earlier critique than the others on my list and provides an interesting insight into how female writers were perceived in the past. His greatest compliment is that she is "beautifully named".

Schroeder, Natalie, 'Regina Maria Roche and the early Nineteenth Century Irish Novel' in Eire-Ireland, 19, 2, 1983.

Briefly mentions the Irish context of The Children of the Abbey and gives good contextual background to her works.

Schroeder, Natalie, 'Regina Maria Roche, Popular Novelist, 1789-1834: The Rochean Canon', in The Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, 73, 1979.

Good bibliographical record of Regina Maria Roche’s work and gives some biographical details.

Schroeder, Natalie, 'The anti-feminist reception of Regina Maria Roche' in Essays in Literature, 9, 1, 1982.

Addresses the question of why Regina Maria Roche was ignored by critics despite her huge popularity.

Tompkins, J.M.S., 1932, The Popular Novel in England 1770-1800, London, Methuen.

See chapter 3 'The Gothic Romance', which mentions The Children of the Abbey and Regina Maria Roche's use of Gothic architecture.

Varma, Devendra. P., 1967, ‘Introduction’ to Clermont in The Northanger Set of Jane Austen Horrid Novels, London, The Folio Press.

Good biographical details




Biographical Dictionaries

Blain, Virginia, Clements, Patricia and Grundy, Isobel, 1990, The Feminist Companion to Literature in English, London, B.T. Batsford Ltd.

Good, detailed biographical record, with some suggestions for further reading.

Kunitz Stanley J. and Haycraft, Howard, 1936, British Authors of the Nineteenth Century, New York, H.W. Wilson.

Brief and entry on Regina Maria Roche, with inaccurate dates of publication of her novels.

Shattock, Joanne, 1993, The Oxford Guide to British Women Writers, Oxford, University of Oxford Press.

Contains good biographical details and useful suggestions for further reading.

Summers, Montague, 1940, A Gothic Bibliography, London, The Fortune Press.

This was the original reference guide to Regina Maria Roche’s work, but contains many inaccuracies in relation to the dates of publication of her novels.

Stephen, Sir Leslie and Lee, Sir Sidney (eds), 1922, The Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford, University of Oxford Press.

Incomplete account of Regina Maria Roche and gives inaccurate dates of publication of her novels. Does however have some useful suggestions for further reading.

Todd, Janet (ed), 1989, Dictionary of British Women Writers, London, Routledge.

The best and most complete and up-to-date biographical record, written by Siobhan Kilfeather, who has a detailed knowledge of Regina Maria Roche and the literature of the period. Contains many suggestions for further reading that are not mentioned anywhere else.

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