Phillis Wheatley—The suggested event is Wheatley's visit to England, ... Born near Charleston, South Carolina, Boston King fled his owner to join the British. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. *Phillis Wheatley was born on this date 1753. Credited as the first African American woman to be published, she became famous for her 1773 poetry collection, "Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral." Beginning in her early teens she wrote exceptionally mature, if conventional, verse that was stylistically influenced by Neoclassical poets such as Alexander Pope and was largely concerned with morality, piety, and freedom. Phillis Wheatley (sometimes misspelled as Phyllis) was born in Africa (most likely in Senegal) in 1753 or 1754. Finally, her health failed and Phillis Wheatley died on December 5, 1784 at the age of thirty, followed soon after by her infant. At the age of eight, she was kidnapped, enslaved in New England, and sold to John Wheatley of Boston. She was named Phillis and given her master’s surname. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). It is unclear precisely when Wheatley was freed from slavery, although scholars suggest it occurred between 1774 and 1778. Who was kidnapped and brought to New England in 1761? Her first name Phillis was derived from the ship that brought her to America, “the Phillis .” Phillis Wheatley came to the Boston slave market in 1761; some have guessed from the African country of Senegal. She was brought to the United States as a slave in 1761 aboard a ship called 'The Phillis'. Phillis Wheatley (1753?-1784) was the first African-American woman to have her poetry published. Her first book, Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral, where many of her poems first saw print, was published there the same year. When she was about eight years old, she was kidnapped and brought to Boston. Phillis Wheatley (May 8, 1753 – December 5, 1784) was a poet.She was the first African-American person to have a book published. Husband: John Peters (a free black man, m. 1778) Sold into Slavery 1761 (in West Africa) Manumission 1773. She houses James, Sarah, Henri and Moses in the stable when the group was escaping the British regulars, who mistakenly thought they were part of Samuel Adams's troublemaker group. Phillis Wheatley was a West African poet and is famous for being the first known African-American poet to be published under their name.. The two were buried in an unmarked grave somewhere in Boston. Many whites couldn’t believe that … Though Wheatley generally avoided the topic of slavery in her poetry, her best-known work, “On Being Brought from Africa to America” (written 1768), contains a mild rebuke toward some white readers: “Remember, Christians, Negroes, black as Cain / May be refined, and join th’ angelic train.” Other notable poems include “To the University of Cambridge, in New England” (written 1767), “To the King’s Most Excellent Majesty” (written 1768), and “On the Death of Rev. Phillis Wheatley was the first published African American poet and first African-American woman whose writings helped create the genre of African American literature. She was purchased by John Wheatley of Boston in 1761. She was captured by slave traders and brought to America in 1761. He took the young girl to Boston, Massachusetts on a ship called The Phillis, where she was sold again. She was born in Senegambia (now Senegal) in west Africa. We just know that she was kidnapped and sold to slave traders when she was a child. It was owned by Timothy Fitch and captained by Peter Gwinn. She was named Phillis and given her master's surname. Phillis Wheatley was the first published African American poet and first African-American woman whose writings helped create the genre of African American literature. When her book of poetry, Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral, appeared, she became the first American slave, the first person of African descent, and only the third colonial American woman to have her work published. Phillis Wheatley was the first African-American female poet to be published. Born around 1753 in Gambia, Africa, Wheatley was captured by slave traders and brought to America in 1761. Wheatley’s first poem to appear in print was “On Messrs. Hussey and Coffin” (1767), but she did not become widely known until the publication of “An Elegiac Poem, on the Death of the Celebrated Divine…George Whitefield” (1770), a tribute to Whitefield, a popular preacher with whom she may have been personally acquainted. If Phillis Wheatley stood for anything, it was the creed that culture was, could be, the equal possession of all humanity.” In this quote Henry Gates explains that people criticizing the work of Wheatley are missing the whole point of her work. Born in western Africa, Phillis Wheatley was kidnapped by slave traders in 1761 when she was about seven years old. Although Wheatley's birth is not documented, it is believed that she was born in 1753 in what is now Gambia or Senegal. 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