Biographies & Works of
The Bristol Boy Bandying Parts
Chatterton's Short Life
Lasted from 1752 to 1770
A total of 17 years 9 months.
A Bald and stark statement
Of a tiny existence
- 17 years and 9 months-
Break it Down &
It Becomes Truly Stark:
5 years: As a Pre-School Child in Bristol.
1 month: As a Pupil at a Pile Street Charity School.
Expelled as too Dull to Learn. (5 or 6 years old)
2 years, 7 months: Home Schooled by his mother, Sarah, & sister, Mary.
6 years, 11 months: 'Imprisoned' as a pupil at Colston's Boarding School
2 years, 9 months & 13 days: As an unpaid Scrivener at Lambert's Solicitors.
37 days: In Shoreditch, London, sharing a bed with the son of his relative Mrs Ballance.
85 days: In Brooke Street, Holborn, London (privacy at last), lodging in the attic room in which he died, in the house of Mrs Angel, a Sacque Maker. The End!
A short life indeed!
But as short as it was
He still got his wish to
Have his name blown about the world.
His fame reached many countries
& stretched across the centuries
Not bad for a poet who was
'But a boy!'
Biographies & Works
Discover how Chatterton was
Viewed through the Ages?
Click the titles to read the Biographies & Works
An Elegy on William Beckford
(1770) No link yet - QE! will upload own copy soon.
The Auction a Poem...
(1770) No link yet - Copy to come from Bristol Library.
Thomas Eagles (editor)
The Execution of Sir Charles Bawdin (1772) (no link yet)
Miscellanies in Prose and Verse (1778) (no link yet)
The First Full biography is in
Biographia Britannica Vol 4. (1789).
(It starts with the phrase; 'Appendix to Letter C. No. 1, Vol 3,
page 450,' which is to follow if I can find it)
C. Roworth (editor)
The Revenge, A Burletta
(1795) (No link yet - QE! will upload own copy soon)
An Anecdote rather than a Biography.
Unlike the others he claims to have known Chatterton
For the three months before he left Bristol (1798).
Original Poems of the Late Unfortunate Thomas Chatterton (GoogleDocs)
No link yet - photos due from my own copy.
Southey, Cottle & Gregory
The Works of Thomas Chatterton in Three Volumes
Oeuvres complètes de Chatterton. précédées d'une Vie de Chatterton. Traduites par Javelin Pagnon ; par A. Callet... Chatterton, Thomas (1752-1770). Auteur du texte.
[if I could read French I would be a dangerous man]
Chatterton's Works translated by Pagnon, with his life by A. Callet.
Chatterton is in illustrious company in this book:
Shakespeare; Milton; Wordsworth.
The essay on Chatterton was published as a book in its own right in (1874), where Masson corrects a few errors. The edition is shown further down, date order.
Bristol and its Famous Associations.
It has a chapter on Chatterton, which includes the first printing of photographs of Chatterton's 'Will.'
Also, the first published images of Burgum and Catcott.
The Marvelous Boy. The Life and Myth of
Thomas Chatterton (1971)
I like this edition, even though the opening page of the Life has Chatterton's year of birth as 1753, and the later edition failed to correct this error. It actually put me off from reading the book. However, nearly twenty years on from first buying a copy, I finally put my picky, prickly attitude to one side and really enjoyed the book and found it informative.
Louise J. Kaplan
Impostor-Poet Thomas Chatterton (1988)
Count your blessings that this edition is not available online. It takes only one page or so before Kaplan talks about the penis - it is so easy to make judgments from a distance of six inches, sorry, I mean 200 years (This is not my favourite book or author).
When searching a specific word
in an online volume
You will sometimes get
a negative result
Even though the word
The function finds it difficult
to recognise some words
Due to faded or foxed type,
Or when the long S is used
(see image below).