William Cowper(1731-1800), Poet
Sitter in 7 portraits
Poet; he studied law at Temple. Cowper achieved popular success with the publication, in 1785, of a volume of poetry including The Diverting History of John Gilpin, a humorous ballad that became the most popular poem of the decade, and The Task, which condemned slavery. He suffered from severe depression throughout his life, and an early personal and professional crisis led to his conversion to evangelical Christianity, influencing much of his work. Several hymns that he wrote became favourites, including 'God moves in a mysterious way'.
More on William Cowper: Jane Austen and her World book in our Shops
- John Cowper (brother)
Listen to a series of podcasts exploring the lives of pioneering women, past and present.
William Eggleston was closely associated with the alternative music scene in Memphis. Revisit our 2016 exhibition and listen to a special playlist.
Links to audio and transcripts of interviews with artists, sitters and historic recordings.