Edith Nesbit, the daughter of John Collis Nesbit, a schoolmaster, was born on August 19, 1858. Her father died when Edith was only six years old. Despite money problems, Edith's mother managed to educate her daughter in France.
At the age of nineteen, Edith met Hubert Bland, a young writer with radical political opinions. In 1879, Edith discovered she was pregnant; she married Hubert on April 22, 1880, and the baby was born two months later.
Edith and Hubert were both socialists, and on October 24, 1883, they decided to form a debating group with their Quaker friend Edward Pease, Havelock Ellis, and Frank Podmore. They decided to call themselves the Fabian Society and were later joined by other socialists. Edith and Hubert became joint editors of the society's journal, Today.
Edith was a regular lecturer and writer on socialism throughout the 1880s. However, she gave less time to these activities after she become a successful children's writer. Her most famous novels include The Story of the Treasure Seekers, The Wouldbegoods, Five Children and It, The Phoenix and the Carpet, The Railway Children, and The Enchanted Castle. A collection of her political poetry, Ballads and Lyrics of Socialism, was published in 1908.
After the death of her husband in 1914, Edith married Thomas Tucker, an engineer. Edith continued to write children's books and had published forty-four novels before her death on May 4, 1924.