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English Poets

Activity

Shakespeare
William Shakespeare was baptized on
April 26, 1564, in Stratford-upon-Avon,
England. From roughly 1594 onward he
was an important member of the Lord
Chamberlains Men company of
theatrical players. Written records give
little indication of the way in which
Shakespeares professional life molded
his artistry. All that can be deduced is
that over the course of 20 years,
Shakespeare wrote plays that capture
the complete range of human emotion
and conflict.
Taken from http://www.biography.com

Christopher Marlowe
Born in Canterbury, England,
in 1564. While Christopher
Marlowe's literary career
lasted less than six years, and
his life only 29 years, his
achievements, most notably
the play The Tragicall History
of Doctor Faustus, ensured his
lasting legacy.

Taken from http://www.biography.com

Silvia Plath
Sylvia Plath was born in
Boston, Massachusetts, on
October 27, 1932. Plath met
and married British poet Ted
Hughes, although the two
later split. The depressive
Plath committed suicide in
1963, garnering accolades
after her death for the novel
The Bell Jar, and the poetry
collections The Colossus and
Ariel. In 1982, Plath became
the first person to win a
posthumous Pulitzer Prize.
Taken from http://www.biography.com

Emily Dickinson
Born on December 10, 1830, in
Amherst, Massachusetts, Emily
Dickinson left school as a
teenager to live a reclusive life
on the family homestead.
There, she filled notebooks with
poetry and wrote hundreds of
letters. Dickinson's remarkable
work was published after her
deathon May 15, 1886, in
Amherstand she is now
considered one of the towering
figures of American literature.
Taken from http://www.biography.com

Edgar Allan Poe


Born January 19, 1809, Boston,
Massachusetts, U.S. American
short-story writer, poet, critic, and
editor Edgar Allan Poe's tales of
mystery and horror initiated the
modern detective story, and the
atmosphere in his tales of horror is
unrivaled in American fiction.
The Raven (1845) numbers among
the best-known poems in national
literature.
Taken from http://www.biography.com

Robert Frost
Born on March 26, 1874, Robert
Frost spent his first 40 years as an
unknown. He exploded on the
scene after returning from
England at the beginning of WWI.
Winner of four Pulitzer Prizes and
a special guest at President John
F. Kennedys inauguration, Frost
became a poetic force and the
unofficial "poet laureate" of the
United States. He died of
complications from prostate
surgery on January 29, 1963.
Taken from http://www.biography.com

John Donne
The first two editions of John
Donne's poems were published
posthumously, in 1633 and 1635,
after having circulated widely in
manuscript copies. Readers
continue to find stimulus in his
fusion of witty argument with
passion, his dramatic rendering
of complex states of mind, and
his ability to make common
words yield up rich poetic
meaning. Donne also wrote
songs, sonnets and prose.
Taken from http://www.biography.com

Walt Witman
Poet and journalist Walt Whitman
was born May 31, 1819 in West
Hills, New York. Considered one
of America's most influential
poets, Whitman aimed to
transcend traditional epics,
eschew normal aesthetic form,
and reflect the nature of the
American experience and its
democracy. In 1855 he selfpublished the collection Leaves
of Grass, now a landmark in
American literature.
Taken from http://www.biography.com

Activity
You just read a superficial summary on the
lives of 8 of the most famous poets in
English Literature.
Your taks will be to choose ONE of the
poets and create a small presentation on
the life of that poet.
You will also choose one poem that we
have not studied in class and do an
analysis.