POETICAL DUST: Poets' Corner and the Making of Britain

Book number: 92686 Product format: Hardback Author: THOMAS A. PRENDERGAST

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Bibliophile price £7.00
Published price £58

In the South Transept of Westminster Abbey are interred the bodies of over 70 men and women, primarily writers, poets and playwrights, and many more are memorialised. Ever since the reburial of Geoffrey Chaucer in 1556, this space has become a sanctuary where some of the most revered figures of English letters are remembered and celebrated and is an attraction visited by thousands of tourists every year. Analysing almost a millennium of political and literary history, Thomas Prendergast examines the chaotic, fitful and frequently politically influenced process by which Britain has consecrated its poetry and poets, beginning with the deaths of Edward the Confessor and Thomas Becket, the various burials of Chaucer, the politicking of Alexander Pope, the absence of William Shakespeare to the present day. Are the notable absences more telling than those who rest here? To what do the many amendments to graves and memorials attest? Full of fascinating vignettes of the writers' lives, quotations and with a full rollcall of residents and memorials, plus floorplans and a great many b/w photos, drawing and other illus, this is a brilliantly crafted rumination on a British institution which would be the ideal read prior to a visit to Westminster Abbey. 235pp.

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ISBN 9780812247503

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