Author Information At the Circulating Library
Author: Sophie Bryant (1850–1922)
Alternate Name(s): Willock (maiden name); Mrs. W. Hickes Bryant (familiar name)
Biography: Sophie Bryant was born in 1850 in Dublin, the daughter of Rev. W.A. Willock, D.D., a former fellow of Trinity College. She spent her childhood in Fermanagh where her father was rector of Cleenish and played a prominent part in the Irish National Educational Movement. After the family moved to London, Bryant received an Arnott Scholarship at Bedford College. In 1869, she married Dr. William Hicks Bryant of Plymouth. Unfortunately, her husband died a year later and Bryant returned to school. She became the mathematical mistress at the North London Collegiate School for Girls, became headmistress of the school in 1895, and retired in 1918. When the University of London first opened to women, Bryant matriculated and graduated in science with mathematical and moral science honors. In 1884 she received a doctor of science degree, being the first woman to earn that honor. During her career, Bryant served on a number of educational committees and wrote a number of educational books and articles. In addition, she wrote one novel, Self-United (1875), a somewhat sensational romance. Bryant was an avid sportswoman, especially mountaineering, and climbed the Matterhorn twice. She died in 1922 from a fall while hiking in the Alps.
References: British Census (1881); Times (29 August 1922); Who's Who (1903)