Biography Of John Donne Essay

3690 words - 15 pages

Biography of John Donne

John Donne was an English poet and probably the greatest metaphysical poets of all time. He was born in 1572 to a Roman Catholic family in London. His father died when John was young leaving his mother Elisabeth to raise him and his siblings. Throughout Donne’s life his experiences with religion were full of trials and tribulations, something that can be clearly seen in his poetry over time. He remained Catholic early in life while he attended both Oxford and Cambridge Universities. Interestingly enough he never received a degree at either university because doing so would have required him to take the Oath of Supremacy, a doctrine that was the core of the Anglican religion recognizing the King as head of the church. Being Catholic, this would have gone completely against his beliefs. He went on to study law at Lincoln’s Inn during his twenties (Menon 1).
Donne received a comfortable inheritance when his mother died. It is said that he spent most of it on “wine, women, and song.” It was assumed that he would begin a career in law, but instead partook in a two-year naval expedition against Spain in 1596. When he returned he received a job as the private secretary to Sir Thomas Egerton, which was entitled, “Keeper of the Great Seal” (Ross 1).
During this time period Donne wrote two of his major works, the Satires and the Songs and Sonnets. It was also during this time that he met Anne More, the sixteen-year-old niece to Sir Thomas Egerton. In 1601 they married, despite the disapproval of her family. Her father had Donne put in jail for a small amount of time for illegally wedding a minor, after he was released he lost his position with Sir Thomas Egerton. Thus the couple never received Anne’s dowry, which left them impoverished (Menon 1).
Donne did his best to make a living by writing poetry, but such an occupation did not have much to offer financially. Donne once described his life with Anne as “John Donne, Anne Donne, undone,” which has often been thought to be a clever way to imply that even though they were very much in love, their love brought them many struggles throughout their lives together. When Donne was twenty-two he made the decision to convert to Anglican after his closest brother Henry died in prison where he was being held for harboring a priest. John and Anne began their family only furthering their financial troubles. At this point Anne’s father finally reconciled with John and Anne and paid his daughter’s dowry. This helped the financial situation significantly and Donne also worked as a lawyer and continued to write, penning the Divine Poems in 1607.
During this time in his life Donne displayed a strong knowledge of the Anglican faith, and penned a few anti-Catholic poems, gaining him the respect of King James who encouraged him to become ordained. This position would drastically help his family’s financial status as his family had grown significantly. Done eventually accepted the position...

Find Another Essay On Biography of John Donne

Analysis of A Valediction Forbidding Mourning by John Donne

1230 words - 5 pages Analysis of A Valediction Forbidding Mourning by John Donne In "A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning," John Donne uses many metaphors and images to convince his lover that even though they are going to be apart, their love will remain untainted. The prefix un- meaning to do the opposite of or is also used to reverse the meaning of a word. The definition of tainted is to be contaminated or to be touched or affected slightly with something

Poem Analysis of Meditation 17 by John Donne

1828 words - 7 pages It is quite feasible to state that poetry at its finest is a dazzling and expressive art of words. A poem not only can expose the diplomatic beliefs of societies, but can also articulate passions and sentiments of the author to whom the poem belongs. One of the many fine poems that have been prevalent among the study of literature that is irrefutably powerful is Meditation 17 by John Donne. This poetic essay exposes John Donne’s opinions and

An Analysis Of Three Works By John Donne

1334 words - 5 pages John Donne showed many aspects of love both human and of the divine in his works. Many of his poems conveyed both topics interwoven, as if to connect the two. "The Good Morrow," "The Indifferent," and "Break of Day" are four of John Donne's poems that reflect the topics of love. There are some aspects of divine love described in these poems as well, however, these poems seem to focus more on human love. "The Good Morrow

Metaphysical Imagery in the Works of John Donne

2654 words - 11 pages Metaphysical poetry is a blend of passionate feelings and paradoxical style. John Donne is believed to be one of the best of metaphysical poets. There are many examples of metaphysical imagery in the works of John Donne. The metaphysical imagery of John Donne will be brought into view by the examples he used throughout his poetry.Donne begins "A Valediction Forbidding Mourning" by indicating a preference for their departure to be unobtrusive, to

Biography of John Wayne Gacy

2027 words - 8 pages Biography of John Wayne Gacy One of the most horrendous serial killers in modern history would have to be John Wayne Gacy, Jr. He was the second of three children and born in 1942. He lived in Chicago and attended catholic schools, and wasn't a very popular boy in school. Gacy seemed to live a very normal childhood, with exception to his relationship with his father, and series of accidents that effected him. No one could have known what the

The Poems of John Donne and George Herbert: Presenting a Distinct View on God

2074 words - 8 pages The ideas that are received from the poems of John Donne and George Herbert present us with a very distinct view on God, and more generally, religion. Both were writing in the late 1500s and early 1600s; however the methodologies used by each are very distinct. George Herbert (1593 - 1633), born later than John Donne (1572 - 1631), largely followed Donne’s poetic style, however incorporating slight changes: the diction that is evident in

Poetry Analysis of "Batter My Heart, Three Personed God, For You" by: John Donne

791 words - 3 pages Poetry Analysis: "Batter My Heart, Three-Personed God, For You"John Donne's "Batter My Heart, Three-Personed God, For You" is an Italian sonnet written in iambic pentameter. The poem is about a man who is desperately pleading with his God to change him. He feels imprisoned by his own sinful nature and describes himself as betrothed to the "Enemy" of God, namely Satan. The speaker has a truly passionate longing to be absolutely faithful to his

A Biography of John Howard Griffin

762 words - 4 pages ohn Howard Griffin who is widely known for Black Like Me, was born on June 16, 1920 in Dallas Texas to John Walter and Lena Griffin. During his youth he was introduced to music, this lead him to love the subject. At fifteen Griffin left the United States for Tours, France to gain a classical education (GRIFFIN, JOHN HOWARD). There he studied French, Literature as well as Medicine. Griffin interned at the Asylum of Tours. There he tested the

Biography of Pope John Paul the Second

1064 words - 4 pages Biography of Pope John Paul the Second The most recognised man in the world, His Holiness Pope John Paul II was born in Wadowice, Poland on the 18th May, 1920. When he was born he was given the name Karol Jozef Wojtyla, Karol after his father and Jozef after the father of Jesus Christ. He was referred to affectionately as Lolek. By the age of 21 the Pope had experienced great loss with the deaths of all the immediate members of

Comparison of How John Donne and Andrew Marvell Present Death in Poems To His Coy Mistress and Holy Sonnet X

1774 words - 7 pages Comparison of How John Donne and Andrew Marvell Present Death in Poems To His Coy Mistress and Holy Sonnet X In the poems To His Coy Mistress and Holy Sonnet X the idea of death plays a strong part in the overall messages of the poems. Both poets use effective but very different methods in order to put forward their views and/or to make a point about society

A Comparison of ‘To His Coy Mistress’ by Andrew Marvell and ‘To His Mistress Going to Bed’ by John Donne

3176 words - 13 pages A Comparison of ‘To His Coy Mistress’ by Andrew Marvell and ‘To His Mistress Going to Bed’ by John Donne ‘To His Coy Mistress’ and ‘To His Mistress Going to Bed’ are both poems about men seducing women. They centre around sex rather than love or romance. Sixteenth and seventeenth century attitudes to love and relationships were much stricter going as far as wealthy people asking their perspective lovers to court them via

Similar Essays

The Bold Metaphysical Poetry Of John Donne

2276 words - 9 pages The Bold Metaphysical Poetry of John Donne In the seventeenth century, John Donne's writing was considered extreme. His style became known as metaphysical, a name given to such poets by critics. The term metaphysical is a word used to define something that is based on human reasoning. The Metaphysicals combined mind and intellect with emotion and nature, and they were accused of writing revolutionary poems just to display their learning

Analysis Of Meditation Iv By John Donne

1333 words - 5 pages The opening statement of John Donne’s Meditation IV sets a disposition for the whole article. “..Except God, Man is a diminutive to nothing” (Donne 23) is saying man is bigger than the world; excluding the fact that God conquers and controls all. Man is in control of his own life, but God controls his fate. It is also stating that the world is nothing in comparison to man and is not as complex. Donne’s numerous comparisons

Biography Of John Steinbeck Essay

1226 words - 5 pages the Nobel Prize for literature. The president of the United States at that time (Lyndon Johnson) allocated Steinbeck with the Medal in Freedom and to top everything off he was on a U.S. postage stamp. John Steinbeck will always be remembered in American literature history. Works Cited "Biography." IMDb. IMDb.com, n.d. Web. 27 Feb. 2014 JACK, PETER MONRO. "John Steinbeck's New Novel Brims With Anger and Pity."Nytimes.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 26

Biography Of John Marshall Essay

1620 words - 6 pages Biography of John Marshall John Marshall was born on September 24, 1755 in prince William County, Virginia. His father moved the family from there before john was ten to a valley in the Blue Ridge Mountains, about 30 miles away. Unlike most frontier dwellings, the home Thomas Marshall built was of frame construction rather than log and was one and a half story. Both parents, while not formally educated, were considered adequately educated for