La Belle Dame sans Merci by John Keats

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Many famous writers have careers spanning over decades, though one English Romantic poet was able to achieve fame in his short career of only five years. John Keats was a poet with a remarkable ability to perceive the world around him; an ability that resonated throughout his works. Although John Keats lived an unfortunately short life, he is considered one of the most important figures of the English Romantic movement because of his use of Romantic literary devices and themes of love and loss in poems such as "La Belle Dame sans Merci" and "When I Have Fears that I May Cease to Be."
On the outskirts of London on Halloween in 1795, famous Romantic poet John Keats was born. Entering school at the age of 8, Keats was "known for his fierce prowess in schoolyard fights" (“John Keats: Childhood”). Although Keats was the eldest of the four children and the son of a mere stable keeper, he and his large family lived a relatively comfortable life. He lived an uneventful life until his father, Thomas Keats, died from a skull fracture after being thrown from his horse. Following his father's death, Keats' distraught mother placed her children in the care of her elderly mother before abandoning him and his siblings for over three years (“John Keats: Childhood”). Only ten years old at the time, the overwhelming loss of his mother led Keats to have panic attacks (“John Keats: Childhood”). Regardless of the damage caused by his mother leaving him, when she returned in 1809 sick with tuberculosis, and Keats nursed her until her death the following year. After his mother's death, young John’s grandmother handed guardianship of her grandchildren over to Richard Abbey, a man who quickly revealed he did not value the children, only their inheritanc...

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