Sylvia Plath: A life in photographs: 1960-1963

This is the last photograph gallery and includes places Plath lived, visited, and wrote about after her return to London in December 1959. In April 1960, Plath gave birth to a daughter, Frieda, at home. In 1961, she suffered an appendicitis and a miscarriage before channeling her creative efforts into her novel The Bell Jar. After this, Plath's creative writing escalated to such a degree that by October 1962, she was writing poems that would make her famous. By the Autumn of 1961, Plath and Hughes purchased Court Green, in North Tawton, Devon. Her son, Nicholas, was born in January 1962. Within the year her marriage collapsed and she moved back to London in early December 1962. The Bell Jar was published in January 1963, and within a month, she took her life. Sylvia Plath is buried in Heptonstall, in Yorkshire, England.


Please contact me regarding use of the photographs on this website. No photographs may be used without my consent.


chalcot

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Plath and Hughes lived here from 1960 through August 1961.

chalcot1

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After it was recently painted but before the blue plaque.

3_chalcot

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With the blue plaque in place.

chalcot2

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One of the lovely squares in the Primrose Hill neighborhood of London.


primrose4

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A street just off Chalcot Square.

primrose1

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The Faber paperback of Winter Trees uses a similar view on its cover.

primrose_hill

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A lovely park with views of London from the top.

york_minster

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Plath signed the contract for Heinemann edition of The Colossus here on 10 February 1960.

Now called the French House.

st_georges_terr

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Dido and W.S. Merwin lived on this street.

11_st_georges

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Plath drafted most of The Bell Jar here in the spring of 1961.

11_st_georges_Close

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Plath used the Merwin's study which was on one of the upper floors.

parliament_hill

Reference:
See Plath's poem "Parliament Hill Fields".

berck-plage

Reference:
See Plath's poem "Berck-Plage", section 1, "This is the sea, then, this great abeyance."
Photo courtesy of Gail Crowther.

concrete_berck

Reference:
See Plath's poem "Berck-Plage", section 2, "Behind the concrete bunkers / Two lovers unstick themselves."
Photo courtesy of Gail Crowther.

berck_bunkers

Reference:
See Plath's poem "Berck-Plage."
Photo courtesy of Gail Crowther.

perfect

Reference:
See Hughes's poem "Perfect Light" in Birthday Letters.

nt1

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Court Green is up the street and to the right.

nt2

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Leading toward the River Taw.

nt3

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Leading toward Essington Road and Court Green.

nt4

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Plath attended some services and set part of her story "Mothers" here.

yew_tree

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The Yew Tree in St. Peter's Churchyard.
Photo courtesy of Gail Crowther.

headstones

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See Plath's poem "The Moon and the Yew Tree".

nt5

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Court Green is on the right.

nt6

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Rose and Percy Key lived here. See Plath's Journals and poem "Berck-Plage".

private

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This gate is built against the wall separating Court Green from the cemetery.

Plath refers to this wall as "the wall of old corpses" in her poem "Letter in November".

nt7

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The thatched cottage of Court Green.

property1

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Notice the clusters of daffodil stalks and the apple trees.

apple

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One of the apple trees.

bee_meeting

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The approximate location of Plath's poem "The Bee Meeting". See also her Journals, pages 656-9.

town_centre

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See Plath's The Journals, Appendix 15, page 633.

sheep

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Plath rode horses near here.

cleggan_pier

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Plath & Hughes stayed near here with Richard Murphy in September 1962.

cleggan_harbour

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Plath & Hughes set off from here with Richard Murphy to visit the island of Inishbofin.

cleggan_disaster

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The subject of a Richard Murphy poem Plath judged in 1962 for the Guinness award at the Cheltenham Festival.

cleggan_road

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An unpaved road is one of two ways to the Old Forge.

old_forge

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Plath & Hughes stayed here.

cleggan_old_forge

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A quiet cul-de-sac in a quiet town.

coole_park

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Plath and Hughes visited Coole Park in September 1962.

autographs

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Did Hughes add his initials to the tree? A "TH" is visible diagonally up to the right from the number 8?

thoor

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Nearby to the town of Gort is Thoor Ballylee.

albion_house

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On 30 October 1962, Plath read her poems and was interviewed here by Peter Orr of the British Council.

fitroy1

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The row houses on Fitzroy Road. The blue plaque for W.B. Yeats is visible.

23_fitzroy

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Plath lived here from December 1962 until her death on 11 February 1963.

fitzroy2

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The Irish poet and dramatist W.B. Yeats lived in this house as a boy.

fitzroy4

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The road ends at Primrose Hill.

mountfort

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The Becker's lived at No. 5. Plath stayed with them the last weekend of her life.

coroners_court

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The inquest into Plath's death was held here, Friday 15 February 1963.

footpath

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A footpath leads from Hebden Bridge to Heptonstall.

heptonstall1

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From the moor.

spgrave1

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I have much less hair now.

plathgrave1

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Are these tulips "too excitable"?

plath_grave

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Photograph taken on 11 February 2003.

new_cemetery

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Plath's grave is in this row.

neilson

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Home to the Sylvia Plath Collection.

plath_plaque

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Erected in 2000, the 50th anniversary of her high school graduation.

blue_plaque

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Take at the unveiling of Plath's Blue Plaque.

the_blue_plaque

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On her former home at 3 Chalcot Square.