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Elizabeth Siddal
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Model
    (July 25, 1829-February 11, 1862)
    Born in London, United Kingdom
    Model, artist and poet
    Model for the pre-Raphaelites, including John Everett Millais and Dante Gabriel Rossetti
    Poems include 'Dead Love,' 'A Year and a Day' and 'At Last'
    Married Rossetti (1860-62)
    She had wild mood swings.
    She may have been anorexic.
    She used her poor health to guilt trip Rossetti into eventually marrying her.
    She abused laudanum (opium dissolved in alcohol).
    She died of an overdose that was officially ruled accidental, but may have been suicide.
    Rossetti allegedly found a suicide note and burned it to avoid a scandal.
    She developed an interest in poetry as a child after discovering a poem by Tennyson on a scrap of newspaper used to wrap a pat of butter.
    She had striking red hair and blue-green eyes.
    While posing in a bathtub as the drowned Ophelia for Millais, she developed pneumonia after the lamps heating the tub went out.
    Critic John Ruskin found her art promising enough that he offered her £150 a year in exchange for all her drawings and paintings.
    Because she came from a working class family, Rossetti kept her from meeting his relatives until after his father's death.
    During their decade-long engagement, Rossetti had affairs with several other women (mostly models posing for his fellow painters).
    A grief-stricken Rossetti placed the only manuscript of his poems in her coffin.
    Seven years later, a less grief stricken Rossetti had her dug up so the poems could be retrieved and published.

Credit: C. Fishel


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