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Portrait of the Day: Percy Bysshe Shelley

Past event archive
25 November 2019, 12:30

Room 18

Free

  • Talks and Lectures

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.

Portrait of the Day talks are given by members of the Gallery's Visitor Services Team and last for up to 30 minutes. Talks are subject to change so please call 0207 306 0055 on the day or check signage in the Gallery.