Poets' Corner

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Memorials in Poets' Corner in Westminster Abbey

Poets' Corner is the name traditionally given to a section of the South Transept of Westminster Abbey because of the high number of poets, playwrights, and writers buried and commemorated there.

The first poet to be interred in Poets' Corner was Geoffrey Chaucer in 1556. Over the centuries, a tradition has grown up of interring or memorialising people there in recognition of their contribution to British culture. In the overwhelming majority of cases, the honour is awarded to writers.

In 2009 the founders of the Royal Ballet were commemorated in a memorial floor stone and on 25 September 2010 the writer Elizabeth Gaskell was celebrated with the dedication of a panel in the memorial window.[1] On 6 December 2011, former Poet Laureate Ted Hughes was commemorated with a floor stone.[2] On 22 November 2013, the fiftieth anniversary of his death, writer C. S. Lewis was commemorated with a memorial floor stone.[3]

History[edit]

Poets' Corner, Kent's 1740 Shakespeare Memorial at centre

The first person interred, Geoffrey Chaucer, owed his burial there in 1400 more to his position as Clerk of Works of the Palace of Westminster than to his fame as a writer. The erection of his magnificent tomb, however, by Nicholas Brigham in 1556 (to where Chaucer's remains were then transferred) and the nearby burial of Edmund Spenser in 1599 started a tradition that is still upheld. The area also houses the tombs of several Canons and Deans of the Abbey, as well as the grave of Thomas Parr who, it is said, died at the age of 152 in 1635 after having seen ten sovereigns on the throne.

Burial or commemoration in the Abbey does not always occur at or soon after the time of death. Lord Byron, for example, whose poetry was admired but who maintained a scandalous lifestyle, died in 1824 but was not given a memorial until 1969. Even William Shakespeare, buried at Stratford-upon-Avon in 1616, was not honoured with a monument until 1740 when one designed by William Kent was constructed in Poets' Corner (though shortly after his death William Basse had suggested Shakespeare should be buried there.) Samuel Horsley, Dean of Westminster in 1796, was said to have tartly refused the request for actress Kitty Clive to be buried in the Abbey:

if we do not draw some line in this theatrical ambition to mortuary fame, we shall soon make Westminster Abbey little better than a Gothic Green Room![4]

Not all poets appreciated memorialisation and Samuel Wesley's epitaph for Samuel Butler, who supposedly died in poverty, continued Butler's satiric tone:

While Butler, needy wretch, was yet alive,
No generous patron would a dinner give;
See him, when starv'd to death, and turn'd to dust,
Presented with a monumental bust.
The poet's fate is here in emblem shown,
He ask'd for bread, and he received a stone.

Some of those buried in Poets' Corner also had memorials erected to them over or near their grave, either around the time of their death or later. In some cases, such as Joseph Addison, the burial took place elsewhere in Westminster Abbey, with a memorial later erected in Poets' Corner. In some cases a full burial of a body took place, in other cases the body was cremated and the ashes buried. There are also cases where there was support for a particular individual to be buried in Poets' Corner, but the decision was made to bury them elsewhere in the Abbey, such as Edward Bulwer Lytton. Other notable poets and writers, such as Aphra Behn, are buried elsewhere in the Abbey. At least two of the memorials (both to individuals buried in Poets' Corner – Rowe and Gay) were later moved to a location elsewhere in the Abbey due to the discovery of old paintings on the wall behind them.

Memorial types[edit]

The memorials can take several forms. Some are stone slabs set in the floor with a name and inscription carved on them, while others are more elaborate and carved stone monuments, or hanging stone tablets, or memorial busts. Some are commemorated in groups, such as the joint memorial for the Brontë sisters (commissioned in 1939, but not unveiled until 1947 due to the war), the sixteen World War I poets inscribed on a stone floor slab and unveiled in 1985, and the four founders of the Royal Ballet, commemorated together in 2009.[5]

The grave of Ben Jonson is not in Poets' Corner, but is in the north aisle of the nave. It has the inscription "O Rare Ben Johnson" (sic) on the slab above it. It has been suggested that this could be read "Orare Ben Jonson" (pray for Ben Jonson), which would indicate a deathbed return to Catholicism, but the carving shows a distinct space between "O" and "rare".[6] The fact that he was buried in an upright grave could be an indication of his reduced circumstances at the time of his death [7] but it has also been suggested that Jonson asked for a grave exactly 18 inches square from the monarch and received an upright grave to fit in the requested space.[8] As well as the gravestone in the north aisle of the nave, a wall tablet commemorating Jonson was later erected in Poets' Corner.

As floor and wall space began to run out, the decision was taken to install a stained glass memorial window (unveiled in 1994 in memory of Edward Horton Hubbard), and it is here that new names are added in the form of inscribed panes of glass. There is room for 20 names, and currently (early 2010) there are six names on this window, with a new entry (Elizabeth Gaskell) unveiled on 25 September 2010.[1]

Burials[edit]

Image Name Born Died Age at death Details of
funeral
Occupation
Robert-adam.jpg Robert Adam 1729 1792 63 ... Architect
Isaac Barrow.jpg Isaac Barrow 1630 1677 46 ... Mathematician
Francis Beaumont.jpg Francis Beaumont 1584 1616 31–32 Grave is unmarked. Name is inscribed on the Cowley gravestone. Playwright
... John Beaumont 1583 1627 43–44 ... Poet
... William Benson unknown 1549 unknown ... Abbot of Westminster
Mary Eleanor Bowes and her husband John Lyon. Mary Eleanor Bowes 1749 1800 51 Reported by some to have been buried in a court dress, with all the accessories necessary for a Royal audience, plus a small silver trumpet, and by others as in her bridal dress. Poet and playwright
Robert Browning 1865.jpg Robert Browning 1812 1889 77 Browning's grave immediately adjacent to that of Alfred Tennyson. Poet and playwright
Busby Richard.jpg Richard Busby 1606 1695 88–89 ... Headmaster
William Camden by Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger.jpg William Camden 1551 1623 72 ... Antiquarian and historian
Thomas Campbell.jpg Thomas Campbell 1777 1844 66 Funeral 3 July 1844.[9] Poet
... Henry Francis Cary 1772 1844 72 Funeral 14 August 1844.[10] Author and translator
Isaac Casaubon from NPG.jpg Isaac Casaubon 1559 1614 55 ... Classical scholar
Sir William Chambers.jpg William Chambers 1723 1796 75 ... Architect
Geoffrey Chaucer (17th century).jpg Geoffrey Chaucer c. 1343 1400 56–57 Grave is unmarked. Name is inscribed on the Cowley gravestone. Memorial was also erected. Author and poet
Abraham Cowley by Sir Peter Lely.jpg Abraham Cowley 1618 1667 48–49 ... Poet
Richard Cumberland, dramatist.jpg Richard Cumberland 1732 1811 79 ... Playwright
William Davenant.jpg William Davenant 1606 1668 62 ... Poet and playwright
Sir-john-denham-1.jpg John Denham 1614 or 1615 1669 63–65 Grave is unmarked. Name is inscribed on the Cowley gravestone. Poet
Dickens Gurney head.jpg Charles Dickens 1812 1870 58 Dickens's will did not dictate his place of burial, but stipulated that there be no grand funeral ceremony. He was therefore given a secret early-morning funeral in the Abbey, 14 June 1870.[11] Author
MichaelDrayton.jpg Michael Drayton 1563 1631 67–68 Died in London. Monument placed by the Countess of Dorset, with memorial lines attributed to Ben Jonson. Poet
John Dryden portrait.jpg John Dryden 1631 1700 68 Grave is unmarked. Name is inscribed on the Cowley gravestone. Memorial was also erected. Poet and playwright
... Adam Fox 1883 1977 93–94 ... Oxford Professor of Poetry
Canon of Westminster Abbey
David Garrick by Thomas Gainsborough.jpg David Garrick 1717 1779 61 ... Playwright
John Gay - Project Gutenberg eText 13790.jpg John Gay 1685 1732 47 ... Poet and playwright
William Gifford by John Hoppner.jpg William Gifford 1756 1826 70 Gifford wanted to be buried in South Audley Chapel, "but for the pressing request of his grateful executor [John Ireland, Dean of Westminster], who was anxious that Gifford's remains should be mingled with the great and good in Poets' Corner, Westminster-abbey."[12] Poet and editor
George Grote 2.jpg George Grote 1794 1871 76 ... Historian
RichardHakluyt-BristolCathedral-stainedglasswindow.jpg Richard Hakluyt c.1552 1616 63–64 ... Author
Haendel.jpg George Frideric Handel 1685 1759 74 ... Composer
Thomashardy restored.jpg Thomas Hardy 1840 1928 87 Hardy's funeral, on 16 January 1928, proved a controversial occasion because Hardy himself had wished to be interred at Stinsford in the same grave as his first wife, Emma. His executor Sir Sydney Carlyle Cockerell, however, insisted that he be placed in the Poets' Corner. A compromise was reached whereby his heart was buried at Stinsford with Emma, and his ashes in the Abbey. Author and poet
Henry Irving portrait.jpg Henry Irving 1838 1905 67 ... Actor
Samuel Johnson by Joshua Reynolds.jpg Dr Samuel Johnson 1709 1784 75 ... Author, poet and lexicographer
Rudyard Kipling.jpg Rudyard Kipling 1865 1936 70 ... Author and poet
... Nicholas Litlington before 1315 1386 70+ ... Abbot of Westminster
Thomas Babington Macaulay, Baron Macaulay by John Partridge.jpg Thomas Macaulay 1800 1859 59 Public funeral, 9 January 1860.[13] Poet and historian
James Macpherson by George Romney.jpg James Macpherson 1736 1796 59 ... Author and poet
John Masefield 1913.jpg John Masefield 1878 1967 88 According to his wishes, was cremated and his ashes placed in Poets’ Corner. Poet and author
... Robert Moray 1608/9 1673 63–65 Grave is unmarked. Name is inscribed on the Cowley gravestone. Statesman and natural philosopher
Gilbert Murray.jpg Gilbert Murray 1866 1957 91 ... Scholar and translator
Laurenceolivier.jpg Laurence Olivier 1907 1989 82 ... Actor
Thomas Parr.jpg Old Tom Parr 1483 1635 152 ... Supposedly long-lived Englishman
Matthew Prior by Thomas Hudson.jpg Matthew Prior 1664 1721 57 Grave is unmarked. Name is inscribed on the Cowley gravestone. Memorial was also erected. Poet and diplomat
Nicholas Rowe from NPG.jpg Nicholas Rowe 1674 1718 44 ... Playwright and poet
Charles de Marquetel de Saint-Evremond by Jacques Parmentier.jpg Charles de Saint-Évremond 1610 1703 93 Grave is unmarked. Name is inscribed on the Cowley gravestone. Memorial was also erected. Essayist and literary critic
Richard Brinsley Sheridan.jpg Richard Brinsley Sheridan 1751 1816 64 ... Playwright and poet
... Robert South 1634 1716 81 ... Theologian and poet
EdmundSpenser.jpg Edmund Spenser c. 1552 1599 46–47 ... Poet
... Robert Stapylton c.1607 1669 61–62 ... Playwright
... Mary Steele 1678 1718 40 ... Letter writer
Alfred Lord Tennyson 1869.jpg Alfred Tennyson 1809 1892 83 Large public funeral, 12 October 1892.[14] In 1893 the government formally requested there be a bust of Tennyson in Poets Corner. The businessman-botanist Charles Jenner offered Thomas Woolner's 1857 bust of Tennyson to the Abbey, and it was placed near Tennyson's gravestone, by moving a tablet to Christopher Anstey. There was no formal unveiling ceremony.[15] Poet
Connop Thirlwall.jpg Connop Thirlwall 1797 1875 78 ... Bishop and historian
... Thomas Triplet 1602 1670 68 ... Prebendary
... Owen Tudor 1429 1501 71–72 ... Monk of Westminster
Mrs garrick.PNG Eva Marie Veigel 1724 1822 98 ... Dancer

Memorials[edit]

Image Name Born Died Age at death Year
commemorated
Details of
memorial
Occupation
Joseph Addison by Sir Godfrey Kneller, Bt cleaned.jpg Joseph Addison 1672 1719 47 1809 Statue Poet and Essayist
Christopher Anstey with his daughter by William Hoare.jpg Christopher Anstey 1724 1805 80 1807 Stone tablet Poet and author
Matthew Arnold - Project Gutenberg eText 16745.jpg Matthew Arnold 1822 1888 65 1891 Bust Poet
Matthew Arnold - Project Gutenberg eText 16745.jpg Matthew Arnold 1822 1888 65 1989 Mural tablet Poet
Peggy Ashcroft 1962.jpg Peggy Ashcroft 1907 1991 83 2005 Floor stone Actress
AudenLibraryOfCongress.jpg W. H. Auden 1907 1973 66 1974 Floor stone Poet
CassandraAusten-JaneAusten(c.1810) hires.jpg Jane Austen 1775 1817 41 1967 Wall tablet Author
John Betjeman statue.jpg John Betjeman 1906 1984 77 1996 Floor stone Poet and author
William Blake by Thomas Phillips.jpg William Blake 1757 1827 69 1957 Memorial bust Poet and artist
... Barton Booth 1681 1733 51–52 1772 Monument Actor
CBRichmond.png Charlotte Brontë 1816 1855 38 1947 Memorial tablet Author
AnneBronte.jpg Anne Brontë 1820 1849 29 1947 Memorial tablet Author
Emilybronte retouche.jpg Emily Brontë 1818 1848 30 1947 Memorial tablet Author
Elizabeth Barrett Browning.jpg Elizabeth Browning 1806 1861 55 1906 Floor stone Poet
Frances d'Arblay ('Fanny Burney') by Edward Francisco Burney.jpg Fanny Burney 1752 1840 87 2002 Panel on Hubbard memorial window Author and playwright
Robert burns.jpg Robert Burns 1759 1796 37 1885 Memorial bust by John Steell. Unveiled 7 March 1885 by the Earl of Rosebery.[16] Poet
SamuelHudibrasButler.jpg Samuel Butler 1612 1680 68 1721 Memorial bust Poet
Lord Byron.jpg George Gordon Byron 1788 1824 36 1969 Floor stone Poet
MemorialToCaedmon(RichardThomas)Jul2006.jpg Caedmon fl.657 fl.680 unknown 1966 Floor stone Poet
John Campbell 2nd Duke of Argyll.jpg John Campbell 1678 1743 64 1749 Monument Soldier and nobleman
LewisCarrollSelfPhoto.jpg Lewis Carroll 1832 1898 65 1982 Floor stone Author
John Clare.jpg John Clare 1793 1864 70 1989 Floor stone Poet
SamuelTaylorColeridge.jpg Samuel Taylor Coleridge 1772 1834 61 1885 Memorial bust Poet
George Eliot at 30 by François D'Albert Durade.jpg George Eliot 1819 1880 61 1980 Floor stone Author
T.S. Eliot, 1923.JPG T. S. Eliot 1888 1965 76 1967 Floor stone Poet and playwright
David Frost Rumsfeld interview cropped.jpg David Frost 1939 2013 74 2014 Floor stone[17] Journalist, comedian, writer and media personality
Elizabeth Gaskell 1832.jpg Elizabeth Gaskell 1810 1865 55 2010 Panel on Hubbard memorial window Novelist
Oliver Goldsmith by Sir Joshua Reynolds.jpg Oliver Goldsmith 1728 1774 45 1776 Memorial tablet and bust Poet and playwright
Adam Lindsay Gordon - Melbourne monument.jpg Adam Lindsay Gordon 1833 1870 36 1934 Memorial bust Poet
... John Ernest Grabe 1666 1711 44–45 1727 Monument Priest and theologian
PortraitThomasGrayByJohnGilesEccart1747to1748.jpg Thomas Gray 1716 1771 54 1778 Monument Poet and historian
Stephen Hales.jpg Stephen Hales 1677 1761 83 1761 Monument Priest and scientist
Robert Herrick 1591-1674.jpg Robert Herrick 1591 1674 83 1994 Panel on Hubbard memorial window Poet
GerardManleyHopkins.jpg Gerard Manley Hopkins 1844 1889 44 1975 Floor stone Poet
Alfred Edward Housman.jpeg A. E. Housman 1859 1936 77 1996 Panel on Hubbard memorial window Poet
Ted-Hughes-March1993.jpg Ted Hughes 1930 1998 68 2011 Floor stone at the foot of that for T. S. Eliot, one of his main influences Poet
HenryJamesPhotograph.png Henry James 1843 1916 72 1976 Floor stone Author
Benjamin Jonson by Abraham van Blyenberch.jpg Ben Jonson 1572 1637 65 1723 Wall tablet Playwright and poet
John Keats by William Hilton.jpg John Keats 1795 1821 25 1954 Mural tablet Poet
John Keble from the magazine "Leisure Hour".jpg John Keble 1792 1866 73 1873 Bust Poet
DH Lawrence 1906.jpg D. H. Lawrence 1885 1930 44 1985 Floor stone Author and poet
Edwardlear.jpg Edward Lear 1812 1888 75 1988 Floor stone Author and poet
C.s.lewis3.JPG C. S. Lewis 1898 1963 64 2013 Floor stone. The dedication service, at noon on 22 November 2013, included a reading from The Last Battle by Douglas Gresham, younger stepson of Lewis. Flowers were laid by Walter Hooper, trustee and literary advisor to the Lewis Estate. An address was delivered by former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams. The floor stone inscription is a quotation from an address by Lewis: "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the Sun has risen, not only because I see it but because by it I see everything else."[18] Author
Jenny Lind retouched.jpg Jenny Lind 1820 1887 67 1894 Wall tablet. "A medallion portrait of the famous singer – the last work of the late Mr Birch – has been placed in Poets' Corner, Westminster Abbey, and was yesterday unveiled by the Princess Christian." [19] Opera singer
HenryWLongFellow1868.jpg Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 1807 1882 75 1884 Memorial bust by Thomas Brock, unveiled 1 March 1884.[20] Poet
Frederic William Maitland by Beatrice Lock (Mrs Fripp).jpg F. W. Maitland 1850 1906 56 2001 Floor stone Historian
Christopher Marlowe.jpg Christopher Marlowe 1564 1593 29 2002 Panel on Hubbard memorial window Playwright and poet
William Mason by William Doughty.jpg William Mason 1724 1797 72–73 1799 Monument Poet
... Thomas May 1595 1650 54–56 1880 Wall stone Poet and playwright
John Milton - Project Gutenberg eText 13619.jpg John Milton 1608 1674 65 1737 Monument Poet and author
John Philips from NPG.jpg John Phillips 1676 1709 32 1710 Monument Poet
Alexander Pope by Michael Dahl.jpg Alexander Pope 1688 1744 56 1994 Panel on Hubbard memorial window Poet
John Pringle.jpg John Pringle 1707 1782 74 ... Monument Military physician
Hannah Pritchard.jpg Hannah Pritchard 1711 1768 56–57 ... Monument. Later moved to the triforium. Actress
John Ruskin 1879.jpg John Ruskin 1819 1900 80 1902 Portrait roundel in bronze by Onslow Ford. Unveiled 8 February 1902, after a controversy over whether Ruskin felt monuments like this wasted money and disfigured a building's architectural unity.[21] Poet and art critic
Sir Walter Scott - Raeburn.jpg Walter Scott 1771 1832 61 1897 Bust by the Scottish sculptor John Hutchison, "a beautifully executed copy of the famous Chantrey bust at Abbotsford".[22] Author and poet
ShadwellT.jpg Thomas Shadwell c.1642 1692 ~50 c.1700 Monument Poet and playwright
Shakespeare.jpg William Shakespeare 1564 1616 52 1740 Monument Playwright and poet
Grsharp.jpg Granville Sharp 1735 1813 77 1816 Monument Slavery abolitionist
Portrait of Percy Bysshe Shelley by Curran, 1819.jpg Percy Bysshe Shelley 1792 1822 29 1954 Mural tablet Poet
Robert Southey - Project Gutenberg eText 13619.jpg Robert Southey 1774 1843 68 1845 Monument Poet
William Makepeace Thackeray by Jesse Harrison Whitehurst-crop.jpg William Makepeace Thackeray 1811 1863 52 1865 Bust Author
James Thomson (Scottish poet).jpg James Thomson 1700 1748 47 1762 Monument Poet and playwright
Dylan Swansea.jpg Dylan Thomas 1914 1953 39 1982 Floor stone Poet and author
Sarony, Napoleon (1821-1896) - Trollope, Anthony (1815-1882).jpg Anthony Trollope 1815 1882 67 1993 Floor stone Author
... William Vincent 1739 1815 76 c.1815[23] 1 Monument Dean of Westminster
Oscar Wilde portrait by Napoleon Sarony - albumen.jpg Oscar Wilde 1854 1900 46 1995 Panel on Hubbard memorial window Playwright and author
William Wordsworth at 28 by William Shuter2.jpg William Wordsworth 1770 1850 80 1854 Monument Poet
James Wyatt.JPG James Wyatt 1746 1813 67 ... Monument Architect

World War I poets[edit]

The memorial in Poets' Corner, Westminster Abbey, to 16 Great War poets is a slate stone slab with the names of the poets inscribed on it. It was unveiled on 11 November 1985, the 67th anniversary of the Armistice. An additional inscription quotes Owen's "Preface":[24]

Image Poet Born Died Age when
war started [25]
Notes on
war service
Notes on
poetry
Richard Aldington 1892 1962 22 Enlisted 1916
Commissioned 1917
Second Lieutenant
Royal Sussex Regiment
...
Laurence Binyon by William Strang.jpg Laurence Binyon 1869 1943 44 Volunteered in 1915 and 1916
Hôpital Temporaire d'Arc-en-Barrois
British hospital for French soldiers
...
Edmundblundencirca1914.jpg Edmund Blunden 1896 1974 17 Commissioned August 1915
Second Lieutenant
Royal Sussex Regiment
...
Rupert Brooke Q 71073.jpg Rupert Brooke 1887 1915 27 Commissioned August 1914
Temporary Sub-Lieutenant
Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve
...
... Wilfrid Gibson 1878 1962 35 Rejected several times
Enlisted October 1917
Army Service Corps
(Motor Transport)
Never saw active service
...
Robert Graves.jpg Robert Graves 1895 1985 19 Commissioned 1914
Royal Welch Fusiliers
...
Julian Grenfell (For Remembrance) cropped.jpg Julian Grenfell 1888 1915 26 Commissioned 1910
Captain (at time of death)
Royal Dragoons
...
... Ivor Gurney 1890 1937 23 Private
Gloucestershire Regiment
...
David Jones (artist, poet).jpg David Jones 1895 1974 18 Royal Welch Fusiliers ...
Robert Nichols, by Elliott & Fry.jpg Robert Nichols 1893 1944 20 Commissioned 1914
Royal Artillery
...
Wilfred Owen plate from Poems (1920).jpg Wilfred Owen 1893 1918 21 Enlisted 1915
Commissioned June 1916
Second Lieutenant
Manchester Regiment
...
... Herbert Read 1893 1968 20 Captain
Green Howards
...
Isaac Rosenberg by Isaac Rosenberg.jpg Isaac Rosenberg 1890 1918 23 Enlisted October 1915
12th Suffolk Folk Regiment
King's Own Royal Lancaster
...
Siegfried Sassoon by George Charles Beresford (1915).jpg Siegfried Sassoon 1886 1967 27 Enlisted 1914
Commissioned May 1915
Captain (at end of war)
Royal Welch Fusiliers
...
Charles Hamilton Sorley (For Remembrance) cropped and retouched.jpg Charles Sorley 1895 1915 19 Enlisted 1914
Captain (at time of death)
Suffolk Regiment
...
Thomasportrait.jpg Edward Thomas 1878 1917 36 Enlisted July 1915
Artists Rifles
Commissioned November 1916
Royal Garrison Artillery
...

Royal Ballet[edit]

The stone slab floor memorial to the four founders of the Royal Ballet was dedicated on 17 November 2009.

Image Name Born Died Age at death Notes on
Royal Ballet role
Ninette de Valois, 1914.jpg Ninette de Valois 1898 2001 102 ...
... Frederick Ashton 1904 1988 84 ...
Constant Lambert by Christopher Wood.jpg Constant Lambert 1905 1951 45 ...
Margot Fonteyn - 1960s.jpg Margot Fonteyn 1919 1991 71 ...

Elsewhere in the Abbey[edit]

Poets and writers commemorated elsewhere in Westminster Abbey, but not in Poets' Corner proper.[26][27]

Image Name Born Died Age at death Year
commemorated
Details of
memorial
Notes on
artistic career
... Robert Ayton 1570 1638 67–68 Bust Poet
Aphra Behn by Mary Beale.jpg Aphra Behn 1640 1689 48 Gravestone Author and playwright
Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton by Henry William Pickersgill.jpg Edward Bulwer Lytton 1803 1873 69 Gravestone Author and poet
John Bunyan.jpg John Bunyan 1628 1688 59 1912 Memorial window Author
Mary Lucas.jpg Margaret Cavendish 1623 1673 69–70 Monument Author and poet
William Cavendish, 1st Duke of Newcastle.jpg William Cavendish 1592 1676 84 Monument Playwright and poet
William Congreve.jpg William Congreve 1670 1729 58 c.1730 Monument Playwright and poet
Noel Coward Allan warren edit 1.jpg Noël Coward 1899 1973 73 1984 Floor stone Playwright and composer
Cowper.jpg William Cowper 1731 1800 68 1876 Memorial window Poet and hymnodist
4thEarlOfRoscommon.jpg Wentworth Dillon 1637 1685 47–48 Grave not marked Poet
Disraeli.jpg Benjamin Disraeli 1804 1881 76 1884 Statue Author
George Herbert.jpg George Herbert 1593 1633 39 1876 Memorial window Poet and orator
Sir Robert Howard.jpg Robert Howard 1626 1698 72 Playwright
CharlesKingsley.jpeg Charles Kingsley 1819 1875 55 1875 Bust Author
James Russell Lowell circa 1855.jpg James R. Lowell 1819 1891 72 Tablet and window Poet
(John) Frederick Denison Maurice by Jane Mary Hayward.jpg F. D. Maurice 1805 1872 66 1932 Bust Author
Anne Oldfield from NPG.jpg Anne Oldfield 1683 1730 47 Gravestone Actress
Henry Spelman2.jpg Henry Spelman c.1564 1641 76–77 Gravestone Antiquarian
Arthur Penrhyn Stanley by Lowes Cato Dickinson.jpg Arthur P. Stanley 1815 1881 65 1884 Tomb and effigy Author
Vaughan-Williams-by-Rothenstein.jpg Ralph Vaughan Williams 1872 1958 86 1958 Floor stone Composer
Isaac Watts from NPG.jpg Isaac Watts 1674 1748 74 1779 Monument Hymnodist

See also[edit]

Information about the last resting places of other famous poets can be found at:

Poets' Corner is also the title of a play by James Huntrods,[28] and The Poets' Corner was a book of caricatures of famous poets by Max Beerbohm published in 1904.

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Elizabeth Gaskell". Westminster-abbey.org (2010-09-25). Retrieved on 2011-10-21.
  2. ^ Ted Hughes takes his place in Poets' Corner, BBC News, 6 December 2011
  3. ^ "CS Lewis honoured with Poets' Corner memorial". BBC News. Retrieved 23 November 2012
  4. ^ The Times, 26 March 1796, p. 3
  5. ^ A Service to Dedicate a Memorial to the Founders of the Royal Ballet, Westminster Abbey press release, November 2009, accessed 16 March 2010
  6. ^ "Monuments & Gravestones: Ben Jonson". Westminster Abbey 1065 to today. Dean and Chapter of Westminster Abbey. Archived from the original on 2008-01-07. Retrieved 2008-05-26. 
  7. ^ Adams, J. Q. The Jonson Allusion Book. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1922: 195–6.
  8. ^ Dunton, Larkin (1896). The World and Its People. Silver, Burdett. p. 34. 
  9. ^ The Times, 29 June 1844, p. 6; 4 July 1844, p. 5
  10. ^ The Times, 22 August 1844, p. 3
  11. ^ 'Funeral of Mr. Charles Dickens', The Times, 15 June 1870.
  12. ^ The Times, 13 February 1827, p. 3
  13. ^ The Times, 9 January 1860, p. 10; 10 January 1860, p. 9
  14. ^ The Times, 13 October 1892
  15. ^ "In accordance with the wish of the family there was no formal ceremonial of unveiling, and, as in the case of General Gordon, Dean Stanley, and the Earl of Beaconsfield, the memorial was placed, a possession for ever, in the presence of none save those by whom the work was done." The Times, 3 June 1895, p. 6
  16. ^ The Times, 9 March 1885
  17. ^ "Sir David Frost's memorial at Westminster's Poets' Corner". BBC News. 13 March 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2014. 
  18. ^ A service to dedicate a memorial to C. S. Lewis, writer, scholar, apologist. Westminster Abbey. 2013. 
  19. ^ The Times, 21 April 1894
  20. ^ The Times, 2 November 1992, p. 6; 26 February 1884, p. 10; 3 March 1884, p. 8
  21. ^ Sydney C. Cockerell letter to The Times, 22 August 1900; The Times, 7 February 1902, p. 9; 10 February 1902, p. 8
  22. ^ The Times, 22 May 1897, p. 16
  23. ^ "Yesterday morning, at half-past eleven o'clock, the remains of Dr. VINCENT, the Dean of Westminster, were interred in a private manner, at the back of DRYDEN's monument." The Times, 30 December 1815, p. 3
  24. ^ Poets of the Great War, Brigham Young University, accessed 14 March 2010
  25. ^ The date used here is 4 August 1914, the date Britain entered the war.
  26. ^ Poets' Corner in Westminster Abbey (James Wilkinson, 2007), inside back page
  27. ^ Treasures of Westminster Abbey (Tony Trowles, 2008)
  28. ^ James Huntrods (1988 – ). Doollee.com. Retrieved on 2011-10-21.

Coordinates: 51°29′57″N 0°7′38.50″W / 51.49917°N 0.1273611°W / 51.49917; -0.1273611