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Rose Mary Crawshay Prize

The Rose Mary Crawshay Prize, worth £500, is awarded annually for work in the field of English Literature.

The award was established in April 1888 by Mrs Rose Mary Crawshay as ‘The Byron, Shelley, Keats In Memoriam Yearly Prize Fund’. In 1914, some years after her death, the Charity Commissioners transferred the administration of the prize fund to the Academy. The Prize was first awarded in 1916.


Eligible nominations can be a for a historical or critical work on any subject connected with English Literature by a woman of any nationality provided that the nominated work is available in English. (Please note that, under the original terms, preference was given to a work regarding Byron, Shelley or Keats.) 

How to nominate

Nominations may only be made by Fellows of the British Academy. Nominations for 2019 have now closed.

Nominating body: Early Modern Languages and Literatures and Modern Languages, Literatures and other Media Sections.

2018 Winner

Emma J. CleryEmma J. Clery is professor of English Literature at University of Southampton. Her publications include The Rise of Supernatural Fiction, 1762-1800 (Cambridge, 1995), Women’s Gothic from Clara Reeve to Mary Shelley (2000), The Feminization Debate in Eighteenth-Century England (2004), Jane Austen: The Banker’s Daughter (2017), and Eighteen Hundred and Eleven: Poetry, Protest and Economic Crisis (2017). In 2013 she was awarded a Leverhulme Trust Major Fellowship for the project ‘Romantic-Era Women Writers and Economic Debate’. She lectures and broadcasts on eighteenth century and Romantic literature, book history and the cultural history of economics.

“Eighteen Hundred and Eleven: Poetry, Protest and Economic Crisis is a study of Romantic-era literature with strong resonance for the present day. It aims to show the way a literary work can engage with and shape political realities in the aftermath of economic shock. The revered woman of letters Anna Letitia Barbauld wrote a powerful verse prophecy that helped to change the course of the war against Napoleon. I explore the poem and the resulting controversy using techniques of narrative and reportage as well as critical analysis. I am thrilled and extremely honoured that the jury of the Rose Mary Crawshay Prize have judged the experiment a success.”

Previous Winners

(The current convention is that one prize is awarded each year, but the list below shows that in the past there have often been two winners in a year.)

2017  Dr Kate Bennett for John Aubrey, Brief Lives with an Apparatus for the Lives of our English Mathematical Writers (Volume I & II) (Oxford University Press, 2015)

2016  Professor Lyndsey Stonebridge for The Judicial Imagination: Writing after Nuremberg (Edinburgh University Press, 2011)

2015  Professor Catherine Bates for Masculinity and the Hunt: Wyatt to Spenser (Oxford University Press, 2013); Professor Ankhi Mukherjee for What is a Classic? Postcolonial Rewriting and Invention of the Canon (Stanford University Press, 2014)

2014  Dr Hannah Sullivan for The Work of Revision (Harvard University Press, 2013)

2012  Professor Julie Sanders for The Cultural Geography of Early Modern Drama 1620-1650

2011  Professor Fiona Stafford for Local Attachments: The Province of Poetry (Oxford University Press)

2010  Dr Daisy Hay for Young Romantics (Bloomsbury)

2009  Frances Wilson for The Ballad of Dorothy Wordsworth (Faber); Professor Molly M Mahooodfor The Poet as Botanist (Cambridge University Press)

2008  Dr Helen W Small for The Long Life (Oxford University Press)

2007  Dr Susan Oliver for Scott, Byron and the Politics of Cultural Encounter (Palgrave)

2006  Dr Rosalind Ballaster for Fabulous Orients: Fictions of the East in England 1662-1785 (Oxford University Press)

2005  Judith Farr with Louise Carter for The Gardens of Emily Dickinson (Harvard University Press);Dr Claire Preston for Thomas Browne and the Writing of Early Modern Science (Cambridge University Press

2004  Dr Maud Ellmann for Elizabeth Bowen: The Shadow Across the Page (Edinburgh University Press); Dr Anne Stott for Hannah More: The First Victorian (Oxford University Press)

2003  Mrs Claire Tomalin for Samuel Pepys: The Unequalled Self (Penguin); Dr Jane Stabler for Byron, Poetics and History (Cambridge University Press)

2002  Professor Wendy Doniger for The Bedtrick: Tales of Sex and Masquerade (University of Chicago Press); Professor K Flint for The Victorians and the Visual Imagination (Cambridge University Press)

2001  Dr Annette Peach for Portraits of Byron (reprinted from the Walpole Society Volume LXII); Dr Lucy Newlyn for Reading, Writing, and Romanticism: The Anxiety of Reception (Oxford University Press)

2000  Marina Warner for No Go the Bogeyman: Scaring, Lulling and Making Mock (Chatto and Windus; Vintage); Joanne Wilkes for Lord Byron and Madame de Staël: Born for Opposition(Ashgate)