Introduced by Jonathan Bate
Illustrated by Simon Brett
A selection of sublime poems, with engravings by Simon Brett. Introduced by Jonathan Bate.
‘My whole life was a contest,’ wrote George Gordon, Lord Byron. Poet, traveller and liberator of Greece, he was the quintessential Romantic figure. Yet he also possessed a refreshingly cynical wit: ‘’Tis pleasant, sure, to see one’s name in print;/A book’s a book, although there’s nothing in’t.’ From the satirical to the sublime, this selection of Byron’s poetry celebrates the different facets of his magnetic personality.
Quarter-bound in leather with cloth sides.
Printed with a design by Simon Brett.
Coloured top page edges.
Set in Baskerville.
21 wood engravings by Simon Brett.
Book size: 11" x 7¼".
Byron was a master of lyric poetry, and this collection showcases 23 of his best-loved short poems, including ‘She walks in beauty’, ‘So we’ll go no more a-roving’ and ‘The Destruction of Sennacherib’, as well as the great narrative poems Childe Harold, The Bride of Abydos and The Corsair. Byron’s own annotations provide a fascinating counterpart to his works. Some are passionate and polemical, such as the notes to ‘English Bards and Scotch Reviewers: A Satire’. Others are more personal: ‘Written after Swimming from Sestos to Abydos’ is accompanied by Byron’s description of his daring Hellespont swim on 3 May 1810. Poems such as ‘To My Sister’ and ‘Lines (On Hearing that Lady Byron was Ill)’ further illuminate Byron’s life as well as his verse. ‘On this Day I Complete My Thirty-Sixth Year’ – written shortly before the poet’s death – provides a poignant ending to the selection.
‘Readers who lap up egregious hypotheses about Byron and fail to familiarise themselves with his works are short-changing themselves’
Jonathan Bate is a highly respected writer and Professor of English Literature at the University of Oxford, an authority on Shakespeare, the Renaissance and Romantic poetry. In his introduction, he explores Byron’s dual identity as ‘both the most Romantic and the most anti-Romantic of poets’. Simon Brett, one of the leading wood-engravers working today, has produced a series of exquisite vignettes that are integrated throughout the volume.
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Review by PAULALOUD on 21st Feb 2015
"A collection of some of Byron's more popular works beautifully bound in a slightly oversized volume with beautiful cover art and illustrations. A must-have for any student of poetry or Byron devotee...." [read more]
Review by Filipe on 10th Oct 2013