Despite his tragically short life, John Keats, a self-confessed 'rebel Angel', endures for many as a personification of the Romantic age. While contemporary critics mocked him as a 'Cockney poet' and an uneducated lower-class 'apothecary' who aspired to poetry, subsequent generations began to see and appreciate both the rich and impassioned sensuousness and the love of beauty and liberty that pervade his work. From Endymion and Hyperion to `The Eve of St Agnes', `La Belle Dame sans Merci' and the Odes, this collection, which presents Keats's oeuvre in chronological order, displays his rapid poetic growth, the development of his philosophical and spiritual beliefs and the voluptuous, silken nature of his verse.
No one else in English poetry, save Shakespeare, has in expression quite the fascinating felicity of Keats, his perfection of loveliness. --Matthew Arnold
About the Author
Though little known in his own lifetime, John Keats' s (1795-1821) hope that he might be considered 'among the English poets' after his death has come to pass, and he is now considered one of the foremost poets of English literature. Keats died of consumption in Rome, with financial worries and the loss of many of those he loved most having plagued his short life.