That Singular Person Called Lear: A Biography of Edward Lear, Artist, Traveller, and Prince of Nonsense

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9780689118975: That Singular Person Called Lear: A Biography of Edward Lear, Artist, Traveller, and Prince of Nonsense
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Traces the life of Edward Lear, discusses his nonsense verse and artwork, and portrays his troubled personality

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From Publishers Weekly:

A shortsighted, timid man, the next-to-youngest of 21 children, Edward Lear suffered all his life from epilepsy (though his great love, Frank Lushington, was never aware of it). Even so, he explored widely in India, Ceylon and the Middle East. From the age of 14, he earned his living by drawing birds and painting landscapes and at his death left some 10,000 works of art. This first biography since Vivien Noakes's in 1969 begins with the six happiest weeks of Lear's lifein the spring of 1849, when he and Lushington traveled together. The book then goes back to his unhappy childhood in Highgate, his many years in Italy and Greece, the brief period when he gave drawing lessons to Queen Victoria and his subsequent life on the Riviera. Lear's paintings are forgotten, but there have been countless editions of his limericks and nonsense verses. How pleasant to know him through this lively, sympathetic introduction by the British author of Not to My Mother.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

Following the current fashion for homoerotic biography, Chitty gives us Lear as traveler and homosexual. That documentary evidence for the latter is nonexistent does not deter the author from making Lear's suppositious love affairs the framework for her narrative and a substitute for other insights into his elusive character. Chitty's insistence on this unsubstantiated sexual theme, and her failure to relate it to Lear's work, seriously weaken the biography. Understanding of Lear the draughtsman, watercolorist, and Nonsense writer is skimped in favor of suggestive hints about every male in sight, not least his manservant of 30 years (married, with a familyand a mistress). Fortunately, one can turn directly to Edward Lear: Selected Letters (edited by Vivien Noakes; Oxford, 1988) instead.Patricia Dooley, Univ. of Washington Lib. Sch., Seattle
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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