Frances Browne, an Irish poetess, born at Stranorlar, county Donegal, June 16, 1818. At the age of 18 months she lost her sight from smallpox, and as she grew up her brothers and sisters read to her such books as they could procure. From the age of 7 to 15 she was constantly composing verses; but becoming acquainted with the poetry of Pope and Byron, she perceived her own inferiority and for some years abandoned verse-making. In 1841 she began to contribute to the "Athenaeum," the editor of which became interested in her story, and introduced her to other periodicals. In 1844 she published a small volume, "The Star of Atteghei, and other Poems," which was well received, and procured for her a pension of £20 from Sir Robert Peel, then prime minister, to whom she dedicated her next volume, the " Legends of Ulster." In 1847 appeared her " Lyric and Miscellaneous Poems," and about the same time a prose story, " The Erick-sons." In 1847 she removed to Edinburgh, accompanied by a sister, who acted as her amanuensis, and in 1852 took up her residence in London. She has been a frequent contributor to various periodicals.
In 1861 she published " My Share of the World," partially an autobiography, and in 1864 a novel entitled " The Hidden Sin".