The poem was inspired by Wordsworth being surrounded by snow, and his sister’s memory of a real incident that happened at Halifax. Wordsworth explained the origins when he wrote, “Written at Goslar in Germany in 1799. It was founded on a circumstance told me by my Sister, of a little girl who, not far from Halifax in Yorkshire, was bewildered in a snow-storm. Her footsteps were traced by her parents to the middle of the lock of a canal, and no other vestige of her, backward or forward, could be traced. The body however was found in the canal.” Lucy Gray was first published in Volume 2 of the 1800 edition of Lyrical Ballads.