From famous Irish poets like Seamus Heaney to English writers such as Thomas Hardy, here are the five famous poets all Irish students will remember from school essays.
Literature takes a prominent role in the Irish school curriculum, probably thanks to the island’s history of successful literary figures including Oscar Wilde, James Joyce, W.B. Yeats, and Seamus Heaney.
So, no matter what school you went to or whereabouts in Ireland you studied, we can bet that poetry played a major part in your time at school.
With that in mind, here are five famous poets all Irish students will remember from school essays.
5. Percy Bysshe Shelley – famous for ‘Ozymandias’
Percy Bysshe Shelley is first up on our list of famous poets all Irish students will remember from school essays.
Irish students will recognise this English Romantic poet for his famous poem ‘Ozymandias’, which deals with the transcience of life.
Percy Shelley was not the only recognisable literary figure in his family as his wife was the famous novelist Mary Shelley, known for Frankenstein, and his mother-in-law was Mary Wollstonecraft, known for her Vindications.
4. Alfred, Lord Tennyson – known for ‘The Charge of the Light Brigade’
Alfred Tennyson was a well-known English poet known for his works ‘The Charge of the Light Brigade’ and ‘In Memoriam A. H. H.’, which deal with themes of death, war, and loss.
One of the most well-loved Victorian poets, Irish students are sure to remember having to write essays on at least one of his poems during their time at school.
Notoriously difficult to analyse, we all needed some help to write our essays on Tennyson’s poetry and services like Write Paper can be a great helping hand.
3. Thomas Hardy – wrote ‘Neutral Tones’
Many students will remember studying the poetry of English writer Thomas Hardy known for his novels Tess of the d’Urbervilles and Far from the Madding Crowd, and his poems ‘The Darkling Thrush’ and ‘Neutral Tones’.
Hardy was a Victorian realist writer, and he was influenced in his novels and poetry by the Romantics, including the poetry of William Wordsworth.
However, many people who went to school in Ireland will probably remember Hardy for his poem ‘Neutral Tones’, which depicts the end of a relationship and the emotions it carries.
2. W.B. Yeats – famous for ‘The Cap and Bells’
William Butler (W.B.) Yeats is an Irish poet, and definitely one of the most famous poets all Irish students will remember from school essays.
Many Irish students will have studied his poem ‘The Cap and Bells’ for their exams, which tells the story of a Jester who gives up his entire existence for the love of a young queen.
Yeats was born in Sandymount, Dublin, and is one of the writers who contributed massively to Ireland’s literary culture and heritage throughout the late 19th– and early 20th-centuries.
Known as a pillar of the Irish literary establishment and a mascot for Irish culture. Yeats helped to found the Abbey Theatre in Dublin and expressed much of his love for Ireland – particularly Sligo, where he spent many of his childhood summers – through his writing.
In his later years, Yeats also became a Senator of the Irish Free State serving two terms in the role.
1. Seamus Heaney – famous for his collection Death of a Naturalist
Did you really go to school in Ireland if you didn’t study the work of Irish poet Seamus Heaney?
Heaney was born in Castledawson in County Derry in 1939 and sadly passed away in 2013.
One of the most renowned Irish poets, Heaney had to top our list of famous poets all Irish students will remember from school essays as we all studied at least one of his famous poems – and if you were lucky, he might have even visited your school at some point!
Amongst his most well-known works was his first poetry anthology Death of a Naturalist, which explores themes such as the relationship between humans and nature, the transition from childhood to adolescence, and the loss of innocence.
The anthology included some of his most popular poems, including ‘Death of a Naturalist’, ‘Blackberry Picking’, and ‘Digging’.