Ill and frail as she was, Phillis Wheatley was given fairly light indoor work to do for the Wheatley family who included Susannah, John, and their two teenaged children Mary and Nathaniel. Phillis’s aptitude for learning was readily apparent, and Mary soon taught her to read and write in English. Phillis also studied Latin, literature, mythology, Christian theology, and geography. She wrote her first poem at the age off eleven, which stunned doubtful Bostonians. Phillis also became a devoted member of Old South Meeting House.


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