Anyone can write poetry, but not anyone can pride themselves of having written poetry that is remembered decades and even centuries later. If someone were to ask you to name at least one famous poet, who would that poet be? Would you think John Keats, would you go for Robert Frost, or for Lord Byron? These are just a couple of the most famous poets of all time. Today, we’re going to talk about 8 such poets and tell you why the world still remembers them and loves their poems.
8 Most Famous Poets of All Time
1. Emily Dickinson
One of the most famous American poets of all time, Emily Dickinson was born on December 10, 1830 in Massachusetts. She lived most of her life isolated from the people around her, which is also what inspired a lot of her poems. She was considered an eccentric, and most of her poems are rather unique for the time in which she wrote them. They have short lines, no title, unconventional punctuation, and a slant rhyme. Dickinson loved to write about death, which is apparent in her work. In fact, one of her most famous poems was entitled “Because I could not stop for Death”.
2. William Wordsworth
One of the most important figures of the Romantic Movement, William Wordsworth was an English poet who was born in 1770. One of his best works, and the one for which he’s best remembered is called “The Prelude”. This is a semiautobiographical poem that Wordsworth wrote at the beginning of his career, and that he later on expanded and revised several times. You might know it better under its other name, which is “the poem to Coleridge”.
3. Maya Angelou
A more recent female poet, Maya Angelou was born on April 8, 1928 in Missouri. She was an African-American Pulitzer Prize-winning poet whose work has touched the hearts of many. In 1993, Angelou recited “On the Pulse of Morning”, one of her most well-known poems at the presidential inauguration of Bill Clinton. That made her the first poet who accomplished this since Robert Frost recited a poem at the inauguration of John F. Kennedy in 1961. Apart from being a poet, Angelou was also a civil rights activist and memoirist.
4. Robert Frost
The aforementioned Robert Frost was one of the most famous poets of the twentieth century. He was born in California on March 26, 1874, and he won no less than four Pulitzer Prizes for his poetry. He depicts rural life like none other, using settings from New England. These settings serve as background for the examination of various philosophical and social themes. Two of his most famous poems are “The Road Not Taken” and “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”.
5. John Keats
Another representative poet of the Romantic Movement, John Keats was born in London in 1795. He is known and praised for his series of odes that relied a lot on natural imagery in order to put forth extreme emotions. Even though he wasn’t particularly famous when he was alive, his fame grew after he died of tuberculosis in 1821. Nowadays, one of his most famous and often analyzed poems is “Ode to the Nightingale”.
6. Sylvia Plath
Sylvia Plath was born in Boston on October 27, 1932. She is one of the most famous poets in America, due to her confessional poetry. Plath’s life was not an easy one. She battled depression for most of her life, which is visible in a lot of her poems. She published two main volumes of poetry, Ariel and The Colossus and Other Poems. She was married to another famous poet of that time, Ted Hughes, and she committed suicide in 1963.
7. Lord Byron
The third most prominent figure of the Romantic Movement, George Gordon Byron (simply known as Lord Byron) was born on January 22, 1788 in London. He is perceived as one of the best British poets of all time, especially because he was able to reverse stereotypes that were considered the norm at the time he wrote his poems. His personal life was quite scandalous, but it didn’t change the appeal he had. One of his most famous poems is “She Walks in Beauty”.
8. Alfred Lord Tennyson
Finally, the last poet we wanted to include in today’s top 8 most famous poets of all times is Alfred Lord Tennyson. He was born on August 6, 1809 in Lincolnshire, and he is considered to this day one of the most famous British poets. During the reign of Queen Victoria, he was Poet Laureate of Great Britain and Ireland. One of his most famous poems is “Tears, Idle Tears”.
We hope you enjoyed this brief top of 8 of the most famous poets of all time! Which one is your favorite?
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