THE BRONTfiS IOI sisters to co-operate. Though all of them, Char- lotte tells us, had very early cherished dreams of one day becoming authors, these were only vague dreams, at any rate, in Charlotte's mind, other- wise she would not have been engrossed in the plan of a school for so long, in fact, until the failure of their poor little advertisement. Emily had the most definite literary ambitions of the three, if one can judge from the part-picture of her in " Frances 5S in The Professor. But " to become an author " in those days was a profoundly serious undertaking and would-be authors approached publishers and that great Personage, the Public, with awe and reverence. Charlotte's account of how she and her sisters came to take the plunge into print is steeped in nervous dread. To have nagged at Emily to get her to agree to what she herself had hardly yet ventured to contemplate as a practical step could not have occurred to her. The poems of Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell were published in one small volume by Aylott & Jones of Paternoster Row in the early summer of 1846. " All . . . that merits to be known are the poems of Ellis Bell," wrote Charlotte four years later, and she was right. The little volume, which cost it authors nearly £50 to publish and advertise, and of which, in the year following publication, only two copies were sold, contained twenty-one poems by Emily, among them some of her best and nearly all showing the beautiful directness and intensity of her poetic instinct. She is a supreme poet to those who love undecorated ex- pression of emotion.