Simple, limited, and unadventurous all describe William Blake’s life (Greenblatt, Abrams, Lynch, Stillinger). Blake was born November 28, 1757 in London, England and his artistic ability became evident in his early years. Blake had a very simple upbringing and had little education. His formal education was in art and at the age of fourteen he entered an apprenticeship with a well-known engraver who taught Blake his skills in engraving. In Blake’s free time, he began reading writing poetry.
At the age of twenty-one, Blake completed his seven-year apprenticeship and began to work on projects for book and print publishers. He also attended the Royal Academy of Art’s Schools of design, where he began unveiling his own personal works (William Blake Biography). Blake’s creativity was evident during this time, and he privately published his first collections of poems, Poetical Sketches, which Blake wrote over a period of fourteen years (William Blake Biography). In August 1782 Blake married Catherine Boucher, with whom he fell in love at first sight (Encyclopedia of World Biography). Blake taught Catherine to read and write, and she later became his assistant.
Blake wrote Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience in 1794. With the help of his wife, Catherine, Blake hand-engraved his poems and paintings on a bronze board while his wife, Catherine, assisted with the binding and coloring of the poems (Zhan). At first, Blake experienced major hardships with his first publication of poems and did not gain any profit or positive reviews. Many people did not appreciate Blake’s works at first, but despite the poverty and hardships Blake faced, he insisted on publishing them without any contracts (Zhan). Blake pushed through the adversities...
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...The Norton Anthology of English Literature, vol. 2. 9th edition. Boston: W.W. Norton, 2013. 129.
Blake, William. “Holy Thursday.” Songs of Innocence and Experience. 1794. The Norton Anthology of English Literature, vol. 2. 9th edition. Boston: W.W. Norton, 2013. 127.
"Poetry Analysis of "London" Yahoo Contributor Network. Yahoo, 29 July 2009. Web. 05 Apr. 2014.
"William Blake Biography." Bio.com. A&E Networks Television, n.d. Web. 25 Mar. 2014.
Blake, William (1757-1827)."Encyclopedia of World Biography.” Detroit: Gale, 1998. Academic OneFile. Web. 2 Apr. 2014.
Zhan, Changjuan. "William Blake and his poem 'London'." Theory and Practice in Language Studies 3.9 (2013): 1610+. Academic OneFile. Web. 4 Apr. 2014.
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