Cover image for Verses of the poets laureate, from John Dryden to Andrew Motion
Verses of the poets laureate, from John Dryden to Andrew Motion
Laurie, Hilary.
Publication Information:
London : Orion, 1999.
Physical Description:
207 pages : illustrations, portraits ; 19 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PR1178.P6 V47 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
PR1178.P6 V47 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



To mark the election of the 19th Poet Laureate we present a collection of the best - and in some cases the worst - of the Laureates work from Dryden to the present incumbent. Each poet is introduced by a short biography and review of his work as a poet and as Laureate, followed by a selection of their poems taken from the entirety of their work. The book is introduced with an essay by the new Laureate (tbc). John Dryden 1631-1700 Thomas Shadwell 1642-1692 Nahum Tate 1652-1715 Nicholas Rowe 1674-1718 Laurence Eusden 1688-1730 Colley Cibber 1671-1757 William Whitehead 1715-1785 Thomas Warton 1728-1790 Henry Pye 1745-1813 Robert Southey 1774-1843 William Wordsworth 1770-1850 Alfred, Lord Tennyson 1809-1892 Alfred Austin 1835-1913 Robert Bridges 1844-1930 John Masefield 1878-1967 C. Day Lewis 1904-1972 Sir John Betjeman 1906-1884 Ted Hughes 1930-1998 Andrew Motion 1999 The book will be introduced by a popular essay which would look at where the post co mes from; how laureates are appointed; what are their duties; who were good poets and who were bad; what challenges the present post brings with it etc. We will issue a tape of selected poems - read by Bill Paterson, Tim Pigott-Smith and

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

Nineteen men have been England's poet laureate since Charles II created the post in 1668. Three of the greatest English poets--Dryden, Wordsworth, and Tennyson--occupied the office; perhaps the late Ted Hughes will maintain his high reputation and prove the fourth greatest. A few other laureates are still known for a handful of poems, but most are just names in thorough literary histories. Editor Laurie presents work by all of them, including quite enough, many readers may decide, by Laurence Eusden, Colley Cibber, William Whitehead, and Henry Pye. Portraits of all but Nahum Tate, who somehow dodged the artists of his day, and accounts of how each man gained his appointment and performed his duties (the aged Wordsworth accepted with the understanding that he would have no duties) accompany the poems. The brand-new laureate, Andrew Motion, introduces the neat little collection with some thoughts on the office and his predecessors, and a prospectus of what he intends to do as poet laureate. --Ray Olson