Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Shelley Memorial, University College, Oxford

Percy Bysshe Shelley is remembered by this rather fine monument, installed in 1893, at University College, Oxford. The college was not officially open to visitors when I passed it the other day, but the porters kindly let me in to see the Memorial.

As Wikipedia says, the white marble sculpture by Edward Onslow Ford shows a "reclining nude and dead Shelley washed up on the shore at Viareggio in Italy after his drowning".

The irorny is that Shelley was expelled from University College for publishing his pamphlet The Necessity of Atheism.


Stephen Tall said...

You might like to know there's an exhibition at the Bodleian on Shelley and his family, opening in December ...

Shelley’s Ghost: Reshaping the Image of a Literary Family
3 December 2010 – 27 March 2011
Exhibition Room, Bodleian Library

The Bodleian Library presents a major exhibition dedicated to one of the most renowned literary families in Britain: Percy Bysshe Shelley, his wife Mary Shelley, and Mary’s parents, William Godwin and Mary Wollstonecraft. Spanning three generations of literary figures, the exhibition charts the history of a family blessed with genius but marred by tragedy.

The Shelley family gave the first two parts of their family archive to the Bodleian in 1893-4 and 1946-61, whilst the final part -- known as the Abinger papers -- was bought by the Library in 2004 through a public appeal. The exhibition will showcase letters, literary manuscripts, rare printed books and pamphlets, portraits and relics. Star items will include Shelley’s own notebooks, a letter of John Keats, William Godwin’s diary and the original manuscripts of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. The exhibition will also feature treasures lent by the Pforzheimer Collection of the New York Public Library, many of which have never been on public display in the UK.

David said...

Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!