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Highly acclaimed biography of the English Romantic poet (1793-1864). Here at last is Clare's full story, from his birth in poverty and employment as an agricultural labourer, via his burgeoning promise as a writer - cultivated under the gaze of rival patrons - and moment of fame, in the company of John Keats, as the toast of literary London, to his final decline into mental illness and the last years of his life, confined in asylums. Clare's ringing voice - quick-witted, passionate, vulnerable, courageous - emerges through extracts from his letters, journals, autobiographical writings and poems.