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Fiery Heart

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448 pages


Leigh Hunt (1784-1859) is the lost giant of English culture - the 'spiritual grandfather' of the modern world according to Virginia Woolf. Descended from black Caribbeans, Hunt was a child of the American and French Revolutions, determined to throw off the old order. As a poet and a radical journalist, he was a passionate advocate of liberal causes and was jailed for his daring campaign against establishment corruption embodied by the Prince Regent. A complex and contradictory figure, Hunt enjoyed the role of political martyr and the homage of writers like Lord Byron while battling with psychic vulnerability and private phobias. Hunt's genius discovered poets like Keats, Shelley, and Tennyson, and his own sparklingly controversial poetry advocates the sexual freedom that characterised all his relationships. In the first full biography in over seventy years, Fiery Heart brilliantly captures this fascinating man and his turbulent times.



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