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The Great War: Poets


38 People in group

Although Edward Marsh published the work of those today considered First World War Poets including Robert Ranke Graves and Siegfreid Sassoon, together in the 1917 anthology of Georgian Poetry, many moved in different literary circles and did not identify as part of a group. Rudyard Kipling and Thomas Hardy were considered war poets although they had not served in the military themselves. In contrast, a majority of those considered First World War Poets, served in the trenches of the Western front and became casualties of the conflict. Characterised by their youth, many were from middle-class backgrounds and served as officers. They moved away from the patriotism of war poetry to record the gruesome reality of their experiences and write in protest about a lost generation. The work of the poet Isaac Rosenberg, who grew up amid poverty in London's East End, would only became widely known posthumously. Wilfred Owen and Sassoon met in the aftermath of war at Craiglockhart Hospital and their literary and personal friendship has become one of the most celebrated in history. Recently there has been an increased interest in the more overlooked work of female poets including Vera Britain and Charlotte Mew, increasing our understanding of the experiences of the First World War.

(Joseph) Hilaire Pierre Belloc

1870-1953
Author and poet
Sitter associated with 17 portraits

Vera Brittain

1893-1970
Writer, pacifist and feminist
Sitter in 25 portraits

Rupert Brooke

1887-1915
Poet
Sitter in 20 portraits

Gilbert Keith ('G.K.') Chesterton

1874-1936
Poet, novelist and critic
Sitter in 74 portraits

Walter de la Mare

1873-1956
Poet and writer
Sitter in 64 portraits

Ford Madox Ford

1873-1939
Writer and critic
Sitter in 2 portraits

Robert Ranke Graves

1895-1985
Poet and writer
Sitter associated with 37 portraits

Thomas Hardy

1840-1928
Novelist and poet
Sitter in 60 portraits

Alfred Edward ('A.E') Housman

1859-1936
Poet and classical scholar
Sitter in 4 portraits

(Joseph) Rudyard Kipling

1865-1936
Writer and poet
Sitter associated with 39 portraits

Alan Alexander ('A.A.') Milne

1882-1956
Writer, playwright and journalist
Sitter in 43 portraits

Wilfred Owen

1893-1918
Poet
Sitter in 1 portrait

Sir Herbert Read

1893-1968
Critic, poet and writer on art
Sitter in 17 portraits

Isaac Rosenberg

1890-1918
Painter and poet
Sitter in 2 portraits | Artist of 1 portrait

Siegfried Loraine Sassoon

1886-1967
Poet and prose writer
Sitter in 86 portraits

William Butler Yeats

1865-1939
Poet and dramatist; son of John Butler Yeats
Sitter in 59 portraits

(Edward Godfree) Richard Aldington

1892-1962
Poet, critic and novelist
Sitter in 9 portraits

Laurence Binyon

1869-1943
Poet and art historian
Sitter in 18 portraits

Edmund Blunden

1896-1974
Poet, writer and teacher
Sitter in 22 portraits

Robert Bridges

1844-1930
Poet Laureate
Sitter in 27 portraits