The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary






Katherine Mansfield

Katherine Mansfield served as the pen-name for Kathleen Beauchamp (October 14, 1888January 9, 1923).



Born in Wellington, New Zealand, she moved permanently to Europe as a young woman, met and married John Middleton Murry, and contracted tuberculosis in 1917. Battling this disease, she resided at many different health spas all around Europe, but when she was in London, she visited with her writing contemporaries like D. H. Lawrence and Virginia Woolf. Later she joined the Gurdjieff commune south of Paris France called the Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man (a health center specializing in tuberculosis and other such diseases) and died there at Fontainebleau. She is buried in the cemetery in the Fontainebleau district in the town of Avon where there is a street named in her honour.

She was a cousin to novelist Elizabeth von Arnim (née Beauchamp).

A writer of short stories, Mansfield developed the techniques of Anton Chekhov in the genre. She is considered one of the two or three most influential short story writers during the Modernist period. The Fly is one of her works which is considered one of the best short stories ever to be written. Much of her work reflects her New Zealand childhood.


  • In a German Pension, 1911
  • Bliss and Other Stories, 1920
  • The Garden Party, 1922
  • plus numerous posthumous collections, letters and diaries

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Last updated: 05-07-2005 05:55:42
Last updated: 05-13-2005 07:56:04