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Young Romantics: The Tangled Lives of English Poetry’s Greatest Generation

Young Romantics: The Tangled Lives of English Poetry’s Greatest Generation


"Y""oung Romantics "tells the story of the interlinked lives of the young English Romantic poets from an entirely fresh perspective–celebrating their extreme youth and outsize yearning for friendship as well as their individuality and political radicalism. The book focuses on the network of writers and readers who gathered around Percy Bysshe Shelley and the campaigning journalist Leigh Hunt. They included Lord Byron, John Keats, and Mary Shelley, as well as a host of fascinating lesser-known figures: Mary Shelley’s stepsister and Byron’s mistress, Claire Clairmont; Hunt’s botanist sister-in-law, Elizabeth Kent; the musician Vincent Novello; the painters Benjamin Haydon and Joseph Severn; and writers such as Charles and Mary Lamb, Thomas Love Peacock, and William Hazlitt. They were characterized by talent, idealism, and youthful ardor, and these qualities shaped and informed their politically oppositional stances–as did their chaotic family arrangements, which often left the young women, despite their talents, facing the consequences of the men’s philosophies. In "Young Romantics," Daisy Hay follows the group’s exploits, from its inception in Hunt’s prison cell in 1813 to its disintegration after Shelley’s premature death in 1822. It is an enthralling tale of love, betrayal, sacrifice, and friendship, all of which were played out against a background of political turbulence and intense literary creativity. Daisy Hay recently completed a doctorate in English Literature from New Hall, Cambridge. She has written for academic journals and literary magazines such as the "European Romatnic Review," the "Times Literary Supplement" and "Slightly Foxed." She lives in London. "Y""oung Romantics "tells the story of the interlinked lives of the young English Romantic poets from an entirely fresh perspective–recounting their journey for individuality and political radicalism. The book focuses on the network of writers and readers who gathered around Percy Bysshe Shelley and the campaigning journalist Leigh Hunt. They included Lord Byron, John Keats, and Mary Shelley, as well as a host of fascinating lesser-known figures, including stepsisters, mistresses, musicians, painters, and other writers. They were characterized by talent, idealism, and youthful ardor, and these qualities shaped and informed their politically oppositional stances–as did their chaotic family arrangements, which often left the young women, despite their talents, facing the consequences of the men’s philosophies. Daisy Hay follows the group’s exploits, from its inception in Hunt’s prison cell in 1813 to its disintegration after Shelley’s premature death in 1822. Played out against a background of political turbulence and intense literary creativity, "Young Romantics "is a tale of love, betrayal, sacrifice, and friendship. " Hays] interweaves a group biography of the l
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