George Gordon Byron was born in London on 22th January 1788, from an aristocratic family. Byron suffered a lot because of his parents: his father usually spends too much money and his mother was a very moody person. When he was 20, he inherited the family's title from his uncle; thanks to it, he gained an exalted social position.
One of his first works is "Hours of Idleness". He travelled a lot all over the Europe.
In 1812 he published the first two cantos of Young Harold’s pilgrimage, which made him famous.
He introduce into the English literature the figure of Romantic artist. New poetic forms were the narratives, descriptions, reflections and personal confessions. Mainly linkings were with history, mythology, art, nature, reflection on human destiny.
He was lame and his infirmity leads him to sadness. But he was so handsome and intelligent that he was loved by all women and he had many love affairs.
The aristocracy refused him and he was compelled to left England for good. He moved to Italy where he met Shelley. Here he finished Young Harold’s Pilgrimage. He took part in carbonary movements.
He stayed in Italy for a long time and Italian poets affected him.
Then he left Italy and moved to Greece where he helped the Greece during the fight for the Independence.
Byron is a poet of the second generation:
- the Byronic man is a rebel, is the man who, despite the order of the society, didn’t care the conventions.
- Byron believed in individual liberty and other men must be free, too.
- He helped people to fight against the oppressors.
Wordsworth started to write when he was a man; he found in the Nature a solace.
Instead, Byron wrote immediately and didn’t find any solace in the Nature.
He was the only one who found each good and bad sides in the Nature.
In the last part of his life he discovered a satirist vein.
Byron described the character of S. Peter with a strong satire, because he invented S. Peter to give an answer to the criticism against satire.
He mock Saint Peter and the angels. When Saint Peter speaks, he makes a lot of mistakes because he is not a cultured man: as the matter of fact, he was a fisherman.