Southey, Margaret (1752–1802)

Southey’s mother. Born Margaret Hill, she married Robert Southey Senior in 1772. The marriage produced nine children, of whom five died young. She was dominated by her older half-sister, Elizabeth Tyler, with whom Southey spent a great deal of his childhood. After the bankruptcy and death of her husband in 1792, Margaret moved to Bath, running a boarding house in Westgate Buildings. Her continued financial difficulties — possibly exacerbated by the extravagance of her half-sister — caused Southey great anxiety. Margaret died on 5 January 1802 after a long illness.