Kitty van Vloten
- Category : 1867-births
- Type : PE
- Profile : 3/6 - Martyr / Role Model
- Definition : Split - Large
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Maya 2
Member of a noted family, spouse of the poet Albert Verwey.
Kitty was the youngest of the seven children of the Dutch scientist and Man of Letters Johannes van Vloten (18 January 1818, Kampen – 21 September 1883, Haarlem) en Elisabeth van Gennep (7 April 1824, Rotterdam - 17 March 1906, Noordwijk). They married 25 October 1854 in Rotterdam. Her father was a freethinker, re-inventor of the work of Spinoza and one of the founders of modern humanism.
Her parents stimulated their three daughters to study and develop themselves: All three "Van Vloten sisters" married prominent Dutch artists and poets.
They supported and became part of the breaking with past morales, seemingly "l'art pour l'art" Dutch cultural movement of the Tachtigers, which bloomed between 1880 and 1894 and that co-existed with the art movements of impressionism and naturalism. The "Movement of the Eighty" criticized the in their opinion narrow-minded (degenerated) moralistic forms of romanticism of pastors and nationalists in their typically "born in cancer" country Holland. But the well educated rebelling "New Guide" proponents mastered foreign languages and studied, translated, reprinted and adored the "universal language of symbols" of their national and many foreign, not that narrow minded great original poets, including the Romantic ones, like the "My life" describing poet Shelley.
Kitty van Vloten grew up in Deventer, Bloemendaal and Haarlem and already met as a child the progressive members of the Liberal Dutch intelligentsia. She and her sisters studied at the first Higher Education school for girls in the Netherlands: The 1st Middelbare meisjesschool that was founded 1867 in Haarlem.
The MMS (counterpart of HBS) school for girls taught: nature and chemistry, geometry ,algebra, biology, history, geography, drawing, music and languages,Dutch , French, German and English. But had also classes in: fine needlework, education, hygiene, psychology, sociology, art history and religion were given. But only the the only Gymnasium, that exclusively taught Latin and Greek, permitted access to the Dutch universities, in a time that Latin was still used as the Universal Language for dissertations and science. So girls had to take expensive private lessons in the classic languages, as they were not allowed to the early Dutch Gymnasiums and Universities. Only exceptionally bright feminist talents and thinkers, like the jurist and economist Lizzy van Dorp (1872—1945) and the physician Aletta Jacobs (1854-1929) became the pioneers in breaking this barrier.
Kitty met her husband Albert Verwey before 8 April 1886, when she wrote him her first documented letter. On 7 Augustus 1888 Albert Verwey wrote Kitty van Vloten (A. Verwey aan K. van Vloten [7.8.881]): Ja, ja Kit; we gaan zulke tevreden menschen worden. (Yes, yes Kit; we will become such happy people).
On 6 March 1890 Kitty finally married the young poet Albert Verwey. The announcement states: “Geen receptie”, so the marriage was held very sober. Maybe Kitty was pregnant of her lover. They moved to Noordwijk aan Zee, where they would stay till their death. They got seven children in their house on the top of a dune called Villa Nova. The kids were raised sober, went outside for walks a lot, as their parents tried to harden them and to generate a sense of duty to the Higher Self and society.
On 2 March 1892 they got a daughter Mea Verwey, a poet, writer and publisher, who wrote under the name Gerda van Beveren. She studied letters at Leiden and graduated in 1828 with her father a promoter on "De betekenis van Johannes van Vloten", her grandfather on mothers side.
She died 1 February 1945 in Amsterdam at age 77.
She is remembered for her wise letters in Kitty van Vloten