Percy Bysshe Shelley(1792-1822), Poet
Sitter associated with 9 portraits
The poet and novelist Shelley was sent down from Oxford in 1811 for professing his atheism. Believing in individual liberty and the perfection of humanity, he was an uncompromising idealist throughout his short life. Queen Mab (1813), promoting radical social change, was Shelley's first major poem. Later forced to flee his creditors, he and his wife Mary Shelley escaped to Italy in 1818. It was there that he produced some of his best work, including Ode to the West Wind (1819) and Adonais, a pastoral elegy inspired by Keats's death in 1821. Returning from visiting Byron and Leigh Hunt in Pisa, he was drowned in a storm at sea.
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Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below
- Portrait of the Day: Percy Bysshe Shelley
29 January, 12:30