Eliot, in full Thomas Stearns Eliot, (born September 26, 1888, St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.—died January 4, 1965, London, England), American-English poet, playwright, literary critic, and editor, a leader of the Modernist movement in poetry in such works as The Waste Land (1922) and Four Quartets (1943). Eliot expresses the hopelessness and confusion of purpose of life in the secularized city, the decay of urbs aeterna (the “eternal city”). The beginning of the Quartets ("Houses / Are removed, destroyed") had become a violent everyday experience; this creates an animation, where for the first time he talks of love as the driving force behind all experience. [73] "The Hollow Men" contains some of Eliot's most famous lines, notably its conclusion: This is the way the world endsNot with a bang but a whimper. [14][15][16] Such a link with Indigenous peoples importantly antedates his anthropological studies at Harvard. On a trip to Paris in August 1920 with the artist Wyndham Lewis, he met the writer James Joyce. He said the results were gloomy and despairing and he destroyed them. They were married at Hampstead Register Office on 26 June 1915. For a year Eliot taught French and Latin at the Highgate School; in 1917 he began his brief career as a bank clerk in Lloyds Bank Ltd. This is the ultimate theme of The Waste Land, concretized by the poem’s constant rhetorical shifts and its juxtapositions of contrasting styles. Woods, one of his former Harvard professors, "My reputation in London is built upon one small volume of verse, and is kept up by printing two or three more poems in a year. In 1915, Ezra Pound, overseas editor of Poetry magazine, recommended to Harriet Monroe, the magazine's founder, that she publish "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock". [22][26] In a letter to Aiken late in December 1914, Eliot, aged 26, wrote, "I am very dependent upon women (I mean female society). He sought a poetic diction that might be spoken by an educated person, being “neither pedantic nor vulgar.”. [64], The poem's structure was heavily influenced by Eliot's extensive reading of Dante and refers to a number of literary works, including Hamlet and those of the French Symbolists. [52], Eliot died of emphysema at his home in Kensington in London, on 4 January 1965,[53] and was cremated at Golders Green Crematorium. Conversion to Anglicanism and British citizenship. In a letter addressed to Ezra Pound, she covers an extensive list of her symptoms, which included a habitually high temperature, fatigue, insomnia, migraines, and colitis. Eliot particularly praised the metaphysical poets' ability to show experience as both psychological and sensual, while at the same time infusing this portrayal with—in Eliot's view—wit and uniqueness. T.S. Thomas Stearns (T. S.) Eliot was born onSeptember 26, 1888, in St. Louis, Missouri. Eliot", "The Hidden Advantage of Tradition: On the Significance of T. S. Eliot's Indic Studies", "Statement by T. S. Eliot on the opening of the Emily Hale letters at Princeton", "Sealed Treasure: T. S. Eliot Letters to Emily Hale", Books: Royalist, Classicist, Anglo-Catholic, "TS Eliot's hidden love letters reveal intense, heartbreaking affair", "Marriage. [97], Addressing some of the common criticisms directed against The Waste Land at the time, Gilbert Seldes stated, "It seems at first sight remarkably disconnected and confused... [however] a closer view of the poem does more than illuminate the difficulties; it reveals the hidden form of the work, [and] indicates how each thing falls into place."[98]. "In a peculiar sense [an artist or poet] ... must inevitably be judged by the standards of the past. With the publication in 1922 of his poem The Waste Land, Eliot won an international reputation. Eliot, T. S. "Burbank with a Baedeker: Bleistein with a Cigar". Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. "[2] Some critics, like Edmund Wilson, Conrad Aiken, and Gilbert Seldes thought it was the best poetry being written in the English language while others thought it was esoteric and wilfully difficult. T.S.Eliot - A short biography (All videos taken from BBC and copyright infringement was not intended.) The meditation leads the narrator to reach "the still point" in which there is no attempt to get anywhere or to experience place and/or time, instead experiencing "a grace of sense". One of the most eminent modernists, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1948 “for his outstanding, pioneer contributions to present-day poetry.” Craig Raine, in his books In Defence of T. S. Eliot (2001) and T. S. Eliot (2006), sought to defend Eliot from the charge of anti-Semitism. Late in his career, Eliot focused much of his creative energy on writing for the theatre; some of his earlier critical writing, in essays such as "Poetry and Drama",[92] "Hamlet and his Problems",[86] and "The Possibility of a Poetic Drama",[93] focused on the aesthetics of writing drama in verse. He was probably the most erudite poet of his time in the English language. The poem’s original manuscript of about 800 lines was cut down to 433 at the suggestion of Ezra Pound. His experiments in diction, style, and versification revitalized English poetry, and in a series of critical essays he shattered old orthodoxies and erected new ones. He was born Thomas Stearns Eliot into the bosom of a respectable middle class family on September 26, 1888 in St. Louis, Missouri. And she persuaded herself (also under the influence of [Ezra] Pound) that she would save the poet by keeping him in England. [3][21] Whilst a member of the Harvard Graduate School, Eliot met and fell in love with Emily Hale. Eliot (September 26, 1888–January 4, 1965) was an American-born poet, essayist, publisher, playwright, and critic. Although Eliot noted that this was not intended to be a one-act play, it is sometimes performed as one. Eliot first attracted widespread attention for his poem "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" in 1915, which was received as a modernist masterpiece. [3][25], Before leaving the US, Eliot had told Emily Hale that he was in love with her; he exchanged letters with her from Oxford during 1914 and 1915 but they did not meet again until 1927. Post-war Europe under the Treaty of Versailles (which Eliot despised), the difficulty of hope and religious conversion, Eliot's failed marriage.[71]. [44] When Eliot heard of the donation he deposited his own account of their relationship with Harvard University to be opened whenever the Princeton letters were. Mini Bio (1) T.S. The poem's groundwork of orthodox Christianity discomfited many of the more secular literati. A connection through Aiken resulted in an arranged meeting and on 22 September 1914, Eliot paid a visit to Pound's flat. Eliot grew up within th… The Waste Land showed him to be, in addition, a metrist of great virtuosity, capable of astonishing modulations ranging from the sublime to the conversational. "[65], In October 1922, Eliot published "The Waste Land" in The Criterion. Eliot, the 1948 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, is one of the giants of modern literature, highly distinguished as a poet, literary critic, dramatist, and editor and publisher. 3 Kensington Court Gardens, has had a blue plaque on it since 1986. This case has been presented most forcefully in a study by Anthony Julius: T. S. Eliot, Anti-Semitism, and Literary Form (1996). Biography of T.S. "[83], In his critical essay "Tradition and the Individual Talent", Eliot argues that art must be understood not in a vacuum, but in the context of previous pieces of art. The significance of the revolution is still disputed, but the striking similarity to the Romantic revolution of Coleridge and Wordsworth is obvious: Eliot and Pound, like their 18th-century counterparts, set about reforming poetic diction. / Money in furs. The men who influenced him at Harvard were George Santayana, the philosopher and poet, and the critic Irving Babbitt. Eliot’s masterpiece is Four Quartets, which was issued as a book in 1943, though each “quartet” is a complete poem. A. E. Malloch, "The Unified Sensibility and Metaphysical Poetry". They kept their wedding secret; the ceremony was held in St. Barnabas' Church, Kensington, London,[50] at 6:15 am with virtually no one in attendance other than his wife's parents. "[87], Eliot's essays were a major factor in the revival of interest in the metaphysical poets. T. S. Eliot was a British essayist, publisher, playwright, literary and social critic, and “one of the twentieth century’s major poets”. "[104] Another well-known example appears in the poem, "Burbank with a Baedeker: Bleistein with a Cigar". Though he was American by birth, he steeled in England and became a British citizen in 1927. Merton Professor of English Literature, University of Oxford; Fellow of Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, 1966–75. [42], One of Eliot's biographers, Peter Ackroyd, commented that "the purposes of [Eliot's conversion] were two-fold. From the Sanskrit ending of The Waste Land to the "What Krishna meant" section of Four Quartets shows how much Indic religions and more specifically Hinduism made up his philosophical basic for his thought process. These had the same poems (in a different order) except that "Ode" in the British edition was replaced with "Hysteria" in the American edition. Eliot's widow Valerie Eliot dies at 86", "Famous names whose final stop was Golders Green crematorium", "National Poetry Day on Premier 2013 – Premier", "East Coker does not deserve the taint of TS Eliot's narcissistic gloom", "An introduction to Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats", "Eliot's Affirmative Way: Julian of Norwich, Charles Williams, and Little Gidding", T. S. Eliot at the Institute for Advanced Study, "T. S. Eliot :: The Waste Land And Criticism", "The Jewish Question: British Anti-Semitism", "T. S. Eliot on Literary Morals: On T. S. Eliot's, "FIRST ENCOUNTERS : When James Joyce met TS Eliot", "A Graphic Revolution: Talking Poetry & Politics with Giannina Braschi", "About Giannina Braschi | Academy of American Poets", "Instagram photo by The Phi Beta Kappa Society • Jul 15, 2015 at 7:44 pm UTC", Biography From T. S. Eliot Lives' and Legacies, official listing of T. S. Eliot's works with some available in full, doollee.com listing of T S Eliot's works written for the stage, "Archival material relating to T. S. Eliot", Links to audio recordings of Eliot reading his work, The Awefull Battle of the Pekes and the Pollicles, T. S. Eliot Prize (Truman State University), The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Cats: Complete Original Broadway Cast Recording, Cats: Highlights from the Motion Picture Soundtrack, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=T._S._Eliot&oldid=999523398, Naturalised citizens of the United Kingdom, Writers who illustrated their own writing, 20th-century American dramatists and playwrights, Academics of Birkbeck, University of London, People associated with University of London Worldwide, Institute for Advanced Study visiting scholars, Commandeurs of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, Recipients of the Pour le Mérite (civil class), Converts to Anglicanism from Unitarianism, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the ODNB, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles with disputed statements from March 2014, Pages using Sister project links with wikidata mismatch, Pages using Sister project links with hidden wikidata, Nobelprize template using Wikidata property P8024, Wikipedia articles with BIBSYS identifiers, Wikipedia articles with CANTIC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with CINII identifiers, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with PLWABN identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SELIBR identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SNAC-ID identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with TePapa identifiers, Wikipedia articles with Trove identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Thirteen Honorary Doctorates (Including ones from Oxford, Cambridge, the Sorbonne, and Harvard), "The Birds of Prey" (a short story; 1905), "A Tale of a Whale" (a short story; 1905), "The Man Who Was King" (a short story; 1905), "The Wine and the Puritans" (review, 1909), "[A Lyric:]'If Time and Space as Sages say'" (1905), "Song: 'If space and time, as sages say'" (1907), "Song: 'When we came home across the hill'" (1909). The only thing that matters is that these should be perfect in their kind, so that each should be an event. Eliot’s study of the poetry of Dante, of the English writers John Webster and John Donne, and of the French Symbolist Jules Laforgue helped him to find his own style. Nevertheless, he concluded, "Ultimately, as both Raine and, to do him justice, Julius insist, however much Eliot may have been compromised as a person, as we all are in our several ways, his greatness as a poet remains. From Smith Academy in St. Louis he went to Milton, in Massachusetts; from Milton he entered Harvard in 1906; he received a B.A. This is a striking claim for a poem as indebted to Dante as anything else in Eliot's early work, to say little of the modern English mythology—the "Old Guy Fawkes" of the Gunpowder Plot—or the colonial and agrarian mythos of Joseph Conrad and James George Frazer, which, at least for reasons of textual history, echo in The Waste Land. [3][20] From 1911 to 1914, he was back at Harvard studying Indian philosophy and Sanskrit. He was born in St. Louis, Missouri, then went to college in Harvard. Bradley.” But World War I had intervened, and he never returned to Harvard to take the final oral examination for the Ph.D. degree. He married an intellectual New Englander, Charlotte Champ. To me, it brought the state of mind out of which came The Waste Land."[31]. '"[2], The initial critical response to Eliot's The Waste Land was mixed. "[84] This essay was an important influence over the New Criticism by introducing the idea that the value of a work of art must be viewed in the context of the artist's previous works, a "simultaneous order" of works (i.e., "tradition"). Burt, Steven and Lewin, Jennifer. "[36], By 1932, Eliot had been contemplating a separation from his wife for some time. [77] Eliot's experiences as an air raid warden in the Blitz power the poem, and he imagines meeting Dante during the German bombing. "[67] The poem is often read as a representation of the disillusionment of the post-war generation. In my end is my beginning. Without Verlaine, Eliot wrote, he might never have heard of Tristan Corbière and his book Les amours jaunes, a work that affected the course of Eliot's life. One project he had in mind was writing a play in verse, using some of the rhythms of early jazz. Eliot influenced many poets, novelists, and songwriters, including Seán Ó Ríordáin, Máirtín Ó Díreáin, Virginia Woolf, Ezra Pound, Bob Dylan, Hart Crane, William Gaddis, Allen Tate, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Trevor Nunn, Ted Hughes, Geoffrey Hill, Seamus Heaney, Russell Kirk,[112] George Seferis (who in 1936 published a modern Greek translation of The Waste Land) and James Joyce. Among its best-known phrases are "April is the cruellest month", "I will show you fear in a handful of dust" and "Shantih shantih shantih". Despite this criticism, these scholars also acknowledge "[Eliot's] poetic cunning, his fine craftsmanship, his original accent, his historical and representative importance as the poet of the modern symbolist-Metaphysical tradition". [54] In accordance with his wishes, his ashes were taken to St Michael and All Angels' Church, East Coker, the village in Somerset from which his Eliot ancestors had emigrated to America. Dawson, J. L., P. D. Holland & D. J. McKitterick. Published in 1930, it deals with the struggle that ensues when a person who has lacked faith acquires it. She also wrote a biography, some religious poems, and a dramatic poem (1926), with a preface by her already widely respected youngest child, Thomas. By 1916 he had finished a dissertation, but he never took the final oral examination for the Ph.D. degree. Although they resist easy characterisation, each poem includes meditations on the nature of time in some important respect—theological, historical, physical—and its relation to the human condition. Thomas Stearns Eliot, better known as T.S. Eliot's essay "The Metaphysical Poets", along with giving new significance and attention to metaphysical poetry, introduced his now well-known definition of "unified sensibility", which is considered by some to mean the same thing as the term "metaphysical". "[109] Eliot never re-published this book/lecture. [22], From 1938 to 1957 Eliot's public companion was Mary Trevelyan of London University, who wanted to marry him and left a detailed memoir.[45][46][47]. But The Waste Land is not a simple contrast of the heroic past with the degraded present; it is, rather, a timeless simultaneous awareness of moral grandeur and moral evil. Eliot regarded Four Quartets as his masterpiece, and it is the work that led to his being awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. "[78], The Four Quartets draws upon Christian theology, art, symbolism and language of such figures as Dante, and mystics St. John of the Cross and Julian of Norwich. After having six children, she turned her energies to education and legal safeguards for the young. It strives to contain opposites: "The past and future / Are conquered, and reconciled. [101], The depiction of Jews in some of Eliot's poems has led several critics to accuse him of antisemitism. From this background, the Quartets end with an affirmation of Julian of Norwich: "All shall be well and / All manner of thing shall be well. The great essay on Dante appeared two years after Eliot was confirmed in the Church of England (1927); in that year he also became a British subject. [Conrad] Aiken, for example, marveled at 'how sharp and complete and sui generis the whole thing was, from the outset. Eliot exercised a strong influence on Anglo-American culture from the 1920s until late in the century. . In contrast to his first marriage, Eliot knew Fletcher well, as she had been his secretary at Faber and Faber since August 1949. Thus, according to biographer John Worthen, during his time in England Eliot "was seeing as little of Oxford as possible". Eliot, in full Thomas Stearns Eliot, (born September 26, 1888, St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.—died January 4, 1965, London, England), American-English poet, playwright, literary critic, and editor, a leader of the Modernist movement in poetry in such works as The Waste Land (1922) and Four Quartets (1943). T.S. Eliot of being obscure," wrote Time magazine of Thomas Stearns Eliot , author of The Waste Land and "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock." Henry Ware Eliot, the father of T. S. Eliot, became chairman of the board of a brick company and served the cultural institutions his father had helped found, as well as others. [12], A pageant play by Eliot called The Rock was performed in 1934 for the benefit of churches in the Diocese of London. [95] And the writers of Time magazine were similarly baffled by a challenging poem like The Waste Land. Eliot's reputation as a poet, as well as his influence in the academy, peaked following the publication of The Four Quartets. Name at birth: Thomas Stearns Eliot. John Worthen's "short biography" of T.S. Known to family and friends as Tom, he was the namesake of his maternal grandfather, Thomas Stearns. [78], With the important exception of Four Quartets, Eliot directed much of his creative energies after Ash Wednesday to writing plays in verse, mostly comedies or plays with redemptive endings. In his earlier poems Eliot had shown himself to be a master of the poetic phrase. Eliot Biography Biography "An age which reads in a hurry and likes to understand familiar meanings with headline speed has accused [T.S.] In 1913 he read Bradley’s Appearance and Reality; by 1916 he had finished, in Europe, a dissertation entitled “Knowledge and Experience in the Philosophy of F.H. He attended lectures by Henri Bergson and read poetry with Henri Alban-Fournier. [However] his range as a poet [was] limited, and his interest in the great middle ground of human experience (as distinct from the extremes of saint and sinner) [was] deficient." [43] From 1933 to 1946 Eliot had a close emotional relationship with Emily Hale. "T. S. Eliot's Life and Career", in John A Garraty and Mark C. Carnes (eds), Plaque on interior wall of Saint Stephen's, Specific quote is "The general point of view [of the essays] may be described as classicist in literature, royalist in politics, and anglo-catholic [, Eliot, T. S. "Letter to J. H. Woods, April 21, 1919.". But in its sources, in its emotional springs, it comes from America."[61]. Eliot, T.S. "Burnt Norton" is a meditative poem that begins with the narrator trying to focus on the present moment while walking through a garden, focusing on images and sounds such as the bird, the roses, clouds and an empty pool. Eliot - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). Julius's viewpoint has been supported by literary critics, such as Harold Bloom,[106] Christopher Ricks,[107] George Steiner,[107] Tom Paulin[108] and James Fenton.[107]. He was intrigued by the book ‘The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.’ In 1898, T. S.Eliot joined S… Eliot was an American-English poet, playwright, literary critic, and editor. [ 63 ] although the character Prufrock seems to him to consist in a work titled Practical.! Alan Rawsthorne set six of the 20th century 's major poem of the century... An assistant in philosophy at the suggestion of Ezra Pound, Ronald Schuchard Emily Hale TS Eliot to! 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