Domett, Alfred

(1811-1887)
   Born at Camberwell Grove, Surrey, and after leaving St. John's College, Cambridge, without a degree, he was admitted to the bar, then emigrated to New Zealand in 1842. His attempt at farming was not a success so he concentrated on journalism and became editor of the Nelson Examiner in 1843. He was involved for many years with the dispute about the administration of Maori land and was elected from Nelson to the House of Representatives in 1855. He was prime minister for one year from 1862 to 1863. He retired to England in 1871 and was made a companion of the order of St. Michael and St. George in 1880. Encouraged by Robert Browning, he published (1872) his long poem Ranolf and Amohia, a South-Sea Day Dream, about Maori life, with a second edition in 1883. He was also the author of the official publications: Narrative of the Wairoan Massacre (1843). Petition to the House of Commons for the recall of Governor Fitzroy (1845). Ordinances of New Zealand Classified (1850). Some of his other poems: "A Christmas Hymn," "A Glee for Winter," "A Maori Girl's Song," "An Invitation."
   Sources: Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite DVD, 2006. The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The Oxford Book of Travel Verse. Kevin Crossley-Holland, ed. Oxford University Press, 1986. The Oxford Companion to English Literature. 6th edition. Margaret Drabble, ed. Oxford University Press, 2000.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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