Beaumont, Joseph

(1616-1699)
   Born at Hadleigh, Leicestershire, educated at the local grammar school and Peterhouse College, Cambridge, Beaumont had a brilliant career. When in 1644 he was one of the royalist fellows ejected from Cambridge, he retired to his old home at Hadleigh, where he started to write his epic poem (some 30,000 lines) "Psyche" (1648). The poem represents the passage of the soul through the various temptations and assaults of life into eternal happiness. At the Restoration, Beaumont was made one of the king's chaplains in 1660. His appointment to master of Jesus College, Cambridge, was overshadowed by the death of his wife. In 1674 he was appointed professor of divinity to Cambridge University. "Whit Sunday" speaks of the Holy Spirit descending as the Eternal Dove. Many of his poems relate to the various disciples and Saints or to religious feast days of the Church. Some of his other poems: "Anniversar28 ium Baptismi," "Biothanatos," "Christmas Day," "Civill Warr," "David's Elegy upon Jonathan," "House and Home," "Morning Hymn," "Purification of the Blessed Virgin," "The Ascension," "The Candle," "The Cheat," "The Garden," "The Hourglass."
   Sources: Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. English Poetry: Author Search. Chadwyck-Healey Ltd., 1995 (http://www. lib.utexas.edu:8080/search/epoetry/author.html). Great Books Online (www.bartleby.com). Stanford University libraries and Academic Information Resources (http://library.stanford.edu). 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 Complete Poems of Dr. Joseph Beaumont. 2 Volumes, Alexander B. Grosart, ed. Edinburgh University Press, 1880. The Oxford Book of Christian Verse. Donald Davie, ed. Oxford University Press, 2003.

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

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