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Biography of William Wordsworth




Early Life

William Wordsworth was born at Cockermouth in the northern country of Cumberland in England on 7th April 1770. His father a lawyer, died when William was only thirteen. His father died poor and so he had his schooling at Hawkshead Grammar school near Lake Windermere. At seventeen he was sent to Cambridge. He entered St. John's College. He was a mediocre student. In 1791 he took his B.A degree. During his student career he travelled widely in Cumberland, Yorkshire, France and Switzerland.

William Wordsworth Biography: 1791-1797

In November 1791 he paid a second visit to France. He was so enamoured of the ideals of the French Revolution that he was about to join the movement. His relatives were alarmed and stopped his allowance to force him to come back. After the September massacre in Paris in 1792, he was greatly shocked. He returned to England and with his sister Dorothy settled in a little cottage in Dorset. Then having met Coleridge, he moved to Alfoxden, a house in Somersetshire, in order to live near him.

Married life

After a visit to Germany in 1798-99 he settled in the Lake District. In 1802 Wordsworth married Mary Hutchinson. She was the childhood friend of Wordsworth. In 1813 he moved with his wife and sister to Rydal Mount where he lived for the rest of his life.

Life of Travels

William Wordsworth had a great passion for travelling. He explored most of the accessible parts of the continent and visited Scotland several times. In 1839 Oxford conferred upon him the degree of D.C.L (Doctor of civil Law). In 1842 the Crown awarded him a pension of 300 Euro a year. And on the death of Southey in 1843 he became Poet Laureate. He died on 23rd April 1850.

William Wordsworth poems

William Wordsworth had begun his poetic career in 1791 with Guilt and Sorrow and in 1792 he published his first considerable poem An Evening Walk. In 1798 he and Coleridge together published The Lyrical Ballads, a collection of poems on entirely new themes and in an entirely new style. Michael was written in the same year. After a tour in Germany he wrote Lucy Gray, Ruth and The Prelude. The Prelude was completed in 1805 but not published until 1850, after his death. In 1807 two volumes of poems were published containing poems like The Solitary Reaper, The Green Linnet, Ode on Intimations of Immortality and Ode on Duty. Between 1823 and 1825 he published a series of sonnets. In 1842 his drama The Borderers was published.