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This version of Thomas Medwin's 1847 biography of Shelley was compiled from a 'copiously amended and extended' copy left unpublished after Medwin's death, and published in 1913 by Harry Buxton Forman (1842-1917). The original work was controversial: Medwin (1788-1869), who was Shelley's second cousin, had already encountered scandal in publishing Conversations with Lord Byron, and Mary Shelley condemned this work unread. Although it contains some inaccuracies, it is the first full-length biography, and by a writer who knew his subject and appreciated his poetry. Forman too was a controversial figure: he had produced editions of Shelley and Keats, but was also implicated in the forgery of 'previously undiscovered' works, falsifying the bibliographies of the most important writers of the nineteenth century. In spite of all this, the book is an important one, showing the material which Medwin had assembled to put into a new edition of his work.
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This version of Medwin's 1847 biography of Shelley was compiled from his own annotated copy, published in 1913 by Forman. Despite issues concerning the veracity of both the author and his later editor, the book is an important one, showing the material intended for a new edition of Medwin's work.
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