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William Wordsworth
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Like many poets, Wordsworth left behind an unfinished poem that was considered to be
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Hello I'm Milo for About.com and today we're talking about the poet William Wordsworth. William Wordsworth is not only considered to have written the best example of Romantic Poetry, a period that started in the late 1700s and some say never quite ended, but he is also credited with the most evocative and clear explanation of the movement. Born in England on April 7, 1770, Wordsworth was orphaned at an early age, an event that understandably influenced his work. Just as influential were the experiences he had while doing a walking tour of Europe during university where he encountered the French Revolution. The conflict on the continent demonstrated to him the struggles and worth of the “common” man.  This theme became a kind of rallying cry for his poetic work and political sensibilities. For example he favored common speech displayed in lyric poetry versus epic poetry. He sought to portray common themes, and, like many romantic poets, his works were highly autobiographical.    In France he fathered a daughter out of wedlock. However he later married Mary Hutchinson a childhood friend, with whom he would have five children.During all this it was his collaboration and friendship with Samuel Taylor Coleridge that continued to form and propel some of his greatest achievements. They collaborated on a collection of their work called Lyrical Ballads and it was the preface to this, actually the second edition, where he so eloquently articulates his thinking on the duty of the poet and the craft of poetry. Although he doesn't use the word Romantic in the essay at all, it is considered one of the best descriptions of the movement.He achieved great success in his life becoming Britain's Poet Laureate and died at the age of 80 on April 23, 1850. Like many poets, Wordsworth left behind an unfinished poem that was considered to be a masterpiece. The Prelude, originally dedicated to Coleridge, was supposed to be part of a much larger work, only pieces of which were ever completed.  His idea was to make a poetic testament to the life course of the common man in an autobiographical work, an effort that was meant to overshadow epic poetry such as John Milton's Paradise Lost.  For more helpful and interesting information on poetry and literature, check us out at About.com.
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