Monday, May 5, 2014

Alexander Pope Biography

Alexander Pope (1688-1744),
by Jonathan Richardson

Young Alexander had a difficult life for two reasons. First of all, he was a sickly child, suffering from a form of tuberculosis that deformed his body, making him a hunchback (hrbatý človek). Secondly, he was born Catholic in London, at a time when Catholics were very unpopular. New laws forbade Catholics from attending school, and then, in 1700, from even living within ten miles of London. His aunt taught him to read, and he then educated himself, reading classical works by Homer & Virgil, along with Chaucer and Shakespeare. He became famous at twenty-one for his poems The Pastorals. He became friends with famous writers like Jonathan Swift, creating the Scriblerus Club. He translated Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey into English. Pope is most famous for writing the poem, The Rape of the Lock. He also wrote Duncaid, a poem mocking people in England that he didn’t like. It was called his biggest mistake in life, even though it was great writing, because it made so many people angry. He had to walk around with two loaded pistols and a great dane, named Bounce.
Alexander Pope, by Louis Francois Roubiliac

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