By A. Norman Jeffares
Half a century in the past, Norman Jeffares wrote the definitive biography of W.B. Yeats, which used to be as a result released in a revised variation in 1990 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the poet's dying. the current quantity, a re-issue of the 1990 variation with a brand new creation and bibliography, is an account of Yeats's lifestyles and paintings, including a desirable number of letters, pictures and poetry.
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Extra info for W. B. Yeats: A New Biography
29 TWO 1881-1887 John Butler Yeats told Willie to enrol himself as a pupil at the High School, an Erasmus Smith foundation in Harcourt Street, a few minutes' walk from the studio in York Street. This was a great change from the Godolphin School. Here there was no bullying, no decorum, but an intelligent autocratic staff and some interesting pupils - among them Charles Johnson, Frederick James Gregg and William Kirkpatrick Magee (who later became known as the author and critic 'John Eglinton') who described Yeats as 'a kind of superboy' immune from the ignominies of school discipline, who actually liked geometry and algebra.
Henley rewrote some of his verse (notably 'A Cradle Song') which was disconcerting, and Yeats found him alarming but impressive, admiring his sincere vision and his dislike of Victorian ideas, especially logical realism. Henley made 'his young men' aware of the value of their work, being generous in his praise of good writing or 'the promise of it'. 3 At Henley's house in September 1888, Yeats met Oscar Wilde whom earlier he had heard lecturing in Dublin. He was deeply impressed by his fellow-Irishman's poise and self-possession, his capacity to speak in deliberate, perfectly ordered sentences.
They also visited the Round Pond at Kensington Gardens, where Willie's Sligo-built yacht The Rose was treated with some contempt by the owners of larger boats. This provoked the artist into ordering for him an expensive model of The Sunbeam (a famous yacht, celebrated in The Voyage in the Sunbeam (1878) by Mrs (later Lady) Anne Brassey); re-christened The Moonbeam, its arrival at the Round Pond led to Willie's becoming Commodore of the Model Yacht Club. However, he was often accused of moral degradation by his father, who taught 1865-1881 11 him lessons and shouted at him.