James Henry Leigh Hunt

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Hunt, James Henry Leigh


Born Oct. 19, 1784, in South-gate, Middlesex; died Aug. 28, 1859, in Putney, near London. English publicist and poet.

Hunt made his literary debut in 1801 with the anthology Juvenilia. He was a prominent liberal publicist and, from 1808 to 1821, a publisher of the weekly newspaper The Examiner. Hunt attracted such writers as Keats, Shelley, and Hazlitt to contribute to the paper. From 1813 to 1815. Hunt was imprisoned for satirical remarks about the prince regent. After 1832 he ceased his political activities.

Hunt’s literary works include romantic poems, such as “The Feast of the Poets” (1814), several plays and novels, and the slanderous memoirs Lord Byron and Some of His Contemporaries (vols. 1–2, 1828). A book of essays on the daily life and mores of London, Men, Women, and Books (vols. 1–2, 1847), is imbued with the spirit of the sentimental idyll. Hunt also wrote a study—somewhat in the nature of a compilation—of the history of English theater from the 16th to the 18th century.


The poetical works. Oxford, 1923.
Leigh Hunt’s Literary Criticism. New York, 1970.


Istoriia angliiskoi literatury, vol. 2, no. 1. Moscow. 1953. Pages 125–29.
D’iakonova, N. Ia. Londonskie romantiki i problemy angliiskogo romantizma. Leningrad, 1970.
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The once marginal Leigh Hunt (and to a lesser degree his brothers John and Robert) has received due scholarly attention in recent years, (1) and we can now appreciate him for his own works, his commitment to reform, and his ability to cultivate connections among writers.
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Literary history has not treated Leigh Hunt kindly.
The poet and essayist Leigh Hunt arrived from England to help edit the radical journal The Liberal.