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Edward Lear

Surely one of the best known and best loved poems in English, ‘The Owl and the Pussy-cat’ tells a charming tale of two creatures, usually sworn enemies, much in love and dancing in the moonlight, but as Jenny Uglow writes in her biography of Edward Lear, ‘Slivers of darkness float within the nonsense and the pictures’. The master of limericks and fantasies which have made generations of children laugh and grown-ups smile, was himself afflicted with loneliness and melancholy....

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