Fiery Heart: The First Life of Leigh Hunt
Leigh Hunt (1784-1859), poet and radical journalist, descended from black Caribbeans, was a passionate advocate of liberal causes in England, enjoying the role of political martyr and the homage of writers like Lord Byron, while battling his private phobias.
Leigh Hunt: Selected Writings
Leigh Hunt (1784-1859) was a prolific, versatile and engaging writer. He outlived many of the poets and essayists of his generation whose reputations overshadowed his, but Coleridge, Wordsworth, Shelley and Keats all owed a debt to his advocacy, as did Tennyson and Browning. A poet of charm and technical skill, and an able translator and playwright, Leigh Hunt excelled as an essayist, literary critic and letter writer. His concern was always, in the words of his son, to 'open more widely the door of the library', to share his literary enthusiasms and extend his readers' tastes. This anthology draws on the full range of Hunt's poetry and prose, revealing a writer committed to the humane and civilizing powers of literature and friendship.
The Wit in the Dungeon: The Remarkable Life of Leigh Hunt?Poet, Revolutionary, and the Last of the Romantics
Holden, a veteran biographer of figures from Shakespeare to Prince Charles, delivers a colorful and eventful portrait of one of the longest-lived members of the Romantic era, whose chief accomplishment, besides his conviviality, may have been imprisonment for satirizing the Regent Prince of Wales in 1812. Hunt (1784–1859) won notoriety for his precocious adolescent poetry and later, with his brother, for their newspaper, the Examiner, which fought against Regency-era corruption. His friends and colleagues included Keats, Shelley, Byron, Hazlitt, Lamb, Carlyle, Browning and Dickens, his eventual nemesis. Holden views more favorably the middle-aged Hunt's belles-lettres potboiling and perpetual shortness of cash than did the popular Victorian novelist, who in Bleak House caricatured Hunt as the feckless Harold Skimpole. Hunt's poetry, tending to the florid and sentimental, made a relatively successful transition to the Victorian era, but his lasting achievements are likely the anthology favorites "Abou Ben Adhem" and "The Glove and the Lions," as well as the light verse "Jenny Kissed Me" (about Jane Welsh Carlyle). A man of letters who appears in many literary biographies, Hunt deserves this sympathetic, engaging one of his own. 16 pages of b&w photos.