Tag Archives: John Keats

Almanac – February 23

1723 – Richard Price born. British moral philosopher and preacher in the tradition of English Dissenters, and a political pamphleteer, active in radical, republican, and liberal causes such as the American Revolution.

He fostered connections between a large number of people, including writers of the Constitution of the United States. He spent most of his adult life as minister of Newington Green Unitarian Church, where possibly the congregant he most influenced was early feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, who extended his ideas on the egalitarianism inherent in the spirit of the French Revolution to encompass women’s rights as well.

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1821 – John Keats died. English Romantic poet. He was one of the main figures of the second generation of romantic poets along with Lord Byron and Percy Bysshe Shelley, despite his work only having been in publication for four years before his death.

Although his poems were not generally well-received by critics during his life, his reputation grew after his death, so that by the end of the 19th century he had become one of the most beloved of all English poets.

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1958 – David Sylvian born. English singer-songwriter and musician who came to prominence in the late 1970s as the lead vocalist and main songwriter in the group Japan.

His subsequent solo work is described  as “a far-ranging and esoteric career that encompassed not only solo projects but also a series of fascinating collaborative efforts.”

Sylvian’s solo work has been influenced by a variety of musical styles and genres, including jazz, avant-garde, ambient, electronic, and progressive rock.

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Almanac – October 31

HALLOWEEN / SAMHAIN

‘Anyone who bleeds on this day will not live long thereafter.’

‘Anyone who sits in the church porch at midnight will see the forms of those who will die in the next 12 months  entering the building as midnight strikes.

A Scottish variation says that the names of the doomed will actually be called out, and the watcher in the porch can save  at least some of them , temporarily at least, by throwing off one item of clothing as each is called.’

1795 – John Keats born.   English Romantic poet, he was one of the main figures of the second generation of romantic poets along with Lord Byron and Percy Bysshe Shelley, despite his work only having been in publication for four years before his death.

Although his poems were not generally well-received by critics during his life, his reputation grew after his death, so that by the end of the 19th century he had become one of the most beloved of all English poets. He had a significant influence on a diverse range of poets and writers – Jorge Luis Borges stated that his first encounter with Keats was the most significant literary experience of his life. The poetry of Keats is characterized by sensual imagery, most notably in the series of odes.

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1879 – Joseph Hooker, American General, died.

There is a popular legend that “hooker” as a slang term for a prostitute is derived from his last name because of parties and a lack of military discipline at his headquarters. Some versions of the legend claim that the band of prostitutes that followed his division were derisively referred to as “General Hooker’s Army” or “Hooker’s Brigade.”

However, the term “hooker” was used in print as early as 1845, years before Hooker was a public figure.

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1926 – Harry Houdini died of gangrene and peritonitis that developed after his appendix ruptured.

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