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New British poet laureate is, gasp, a woman. And Scottish. And gay.

Carol Ann Duffy has been named Britain's new Poet Laureate, the New York Times is reporting. Duffy is the first woman to hold the position in the 341 years it has existed. Born in Glasgow, she's also the first Scottish poet to fill the office. She succeeds her friend Andrew Motion, who took the job in 1999. Rumors swirled at the time that Duffy lost the honor because of concern that her sexuality would alienate some U.K. citizens, according to the BBC, which also notes that, in addition to an annual honorarium, Duffy is also owed

payment of a "butt of sack" or, in modern terms, about 600 bottles of sherry.

Duffy said: "Andrew [Motion] hasn't had his yet so I've asked for mine up front."


Duffy's notable collections include her 1985 debut Standing Female Nude and 1999's The World's Wife, which views important fictional, mythic, and historic happenings through the eyes of characters like Mrs. Faust and Queen Kong.

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