Panel M3

Thomas Chatterton


The Boy Bandying Parts with Shakespeare!


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 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 10 months: 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 Holborn, London, lodging in an attic room (privacy at last), in the house of Mrs Angel, a Sacque Maker. The End!

A short life indeed!  

But, as short as his life was

His imaginative touch,

& sense of fun, 

Reached many countries

& stretched across the centuries

Not bad for a poet who was

'But a boy!'


How was Chatterton

Viewed through the Ages?

Click the titles to read the Biographies:

Herbert Croft

Most Chatterton 'facts' come from

The Wonderful Weirdness  of Croft's

Love and Madness (1780) (ARCHIVE.ORG)

Love and Madness (1786) (Google Books)

George Gregory 

Biographia Britannica Vol 4

The First Full biography (1789)

(Starts with the phrase; 'Appendix to Letter C. No. 1, Vol 3,

page 450,' which is not available yet)

The Life of Thomas Chatterton (Google Books)

George Gregory 

The First Full biography (1789)

The Life of Thomas Chatterton (Google Books)

Edward Gardener 

An Anecdote rather than a Biography.

Unlike the others he claims to have known Chatterton three months before he left Bristol (1798).

Original Poems of the Late Unfortunate Thomas Chatterton (GoogleDocs)

Not Ready Yet  - photos due from my copy.

Southey, Cottle & Gregory 

A Three Volume Set (M211)

Rowley's Works, Miscellanies Poems and Pieces, and Gregory's Life of Chatterton

The Works of Thomas Chatterton (1803)

John Dix

Three Editions by

The Controversial Biographer

The Life of Chatterton (1837) (Google Books)

Pen and Ink Sketches: (1845) (

The Life of Chatterton (1851) (Google Books)

David Masson

Chatterton: A Story of the Year 1770

In Essays Chiefly on English Poets

[In illustrious company; Shakespeare; Milton; Wordsworth]

(1856) (Hathitrust)

David Masson

Chatterton: A Story of the Year 1770

(1874) (Hathitrust)

Stanley Hutton

Bristol and its Famous Associations.

A section devoted to Chatterton.

Includes the first printing of photographs of Chatterton's 'Will.'

Also, the first published images of Burgum and Catcott.

Chatterton (1907)


Charles Edward Russell 

A Pulitzer Prize Winner for Biography

A Biography of Chatterton

The True Life of Chatterton (1908)


John Ingram

A Biography of Chatterton

From one of the protagonists in

 The Chatterton Family Bible Saga

The True Life of Chatterton (1910)


Esther Parker Elinger 

Thomas Chatterton The Marvelous Boy

To which is added The Exhibition A Personal Satire (1930)

Not Available Yet


E.H.W Meyerstein 

The Definitive Life (M212)

A Life of Thomas Chatterton (1930)

(Google Docs)

Ernst Penzoldt 

The Marvellous Boy

Translated by J. Trounstine (1931)

Basil Cottle

A Short Biography 

Just 15 pages

Thomas Chatterton (1963)

(Google Docs)

Louise J. Kaplan

The Family Romance of the Impostor-Poet Thomas Chatterton (1988)

Not Available - Yet!

More to come




Heads Up!

When searching a specific word

in an online volume

You will sometimes get

a negative result

Even though the word

is present!

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).

Use Your Browser to Search this Page  (.QE!). 

© 2020 by .QE!. of the TCMP