Characterized as an "eccentric literary man not without a spice of genius," William North was born in England and eventually settled in New York City (W. Rossetti 48-49).
Rossetti describes North as "a pale, rather fleshy young man, with bright eyes, a slightly high clear voice, and very pallid straight hair of yellowish twinge." He depicts North as a "strange character" whose "shifts were numerous -- assuredly more numerous than his shirts." Rossetti states that when North left London for the United States, "at some such date as 1853," he left two women there "with some claim upon him" and that these women were the inspiration for North's poems Blondine and Brunetta. Rossetti recounts that in New York, "North made a not incosiderable impression by his tales and other writings." However, he attributes North's suicide to the fact that "money refused to be forthcoming."
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