Sir John Betjeman

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Betjeman, Sir John

(bĕt`jəmən), 1906–84, English poet, b. London. Traditional in rhyme and meter, his verse combined a witty appraisal of the English present with nostalgia for England's past, especially the Victorian past. His published collections include Mt. Zion (1933), Continental Dew (1937), Old Lights for New Chancels (1940), A Few Late Chrysanthemums (1954), High and Low (1966), Metro–Land (1977), Church Poems (1981), and Collected Poems (1971 and 2006). He also wrote numerous architectural studies, including Ghastly Good Taste or a Depressing Story of the Rise and Fall of English Architecture (1933, rev. ed. 1971) and A Pictorial History of English Architecture (1972). Knighted in 1969, he was named poet laureate of England in 1972.

Bibliography

See Summoned by Bells (1960), an autobiography in verse; biographies by P. Taylor-Martin (1983), B. Hillier (1988 and 2002), and A. N. Wilson (2006); B. Hillier, John Betjeman: A Life in Pictures (1984); C. L. Green, ed., John Betjeman Letters (2 vol., 1994–95); studies by M. L. Stapleton (1974) and F. Delaney (1983).

References in periodicals archive ?
John Betjeman was a British poet and public figure who was known for his devotion to preserving Victorian architecture and satirical writings on suburban London.
The name is like a ring of bells," Poet John Betjeman has written of the picturesque spot.
She will hold the position for 10 years and follows poets such as William Wordsworth and John Betjeman.
As all the world now knows, Bevis Hillier, whose three-volume life of Sir John Betjeman (1906-1984) has just appeared in a one-volume centenary-year abridgement, has fooled A.
I have admiration for the work of the late Sir John Betjeman and reading the latest biography of his life was spoilt at the start when the author A.N.
The critical fate of John Betjeman is a sharply divided one.
Friends of the rising star, who played raunchy Nan Astley in the taboo-breaking TV lesbian serial, expected her to marry John, who is grandson of the late Poet Laureate Sir John Betjeman.
All confirming Sir John Betjeman's memorable lines from "Christmas": "And sleepless children's hearts are glad/And Christmas morning bells say, "Come!"
His withdrawal from almost all social intercourse earned him the name Obscurity from John Betjeman. Fortunately there were enough people who knew that it was his original mind and ideas which had turned the Architectural Press into a `seedbed of ideas' as James Richards recalled, and he was awarded the RIBA Gold Medal for his contribution to architecture in 1973.
His second collection, Londoners (1964), was in general more serious in tone and showed affinities with the poetry of John Betjeman.
It is a poem the latter Sir John Betjeman might have written had he been holed up in Kurt Schwitters' Merzbarn for a few rainy English weeks.
In 1984 Hughes succeeded Sir John Betjeman as Poet Laureate.