Edward Lear, Victorian author of nonsense verse, was also a prolific water-colourist and keen traveller. This biography describes some of Lear's watercolours and sketches, and also provides an analysis of classic poems, such as "The Owl and the Pussycat".
Edward Lear, Victorian author of nonsense verse, was also a water-colourist and a traveller. Lear's sense of humour was contrasted with his severe bouts of depression. Gregarious and popular, he had a wide circle of friends including Alfred Tennyson, yet was often lonely. As well as descriptions of some of Lear's sketches and watercolours (of which he painted some 10,000 in the course of his career), Levi also provides critical analysis of classic poems, such as "The Jumblies", "The Owl and the Pussycat" and "The Yonghy-Bonghy-Bo", setting them in the wider context of traditional nursery rhymes. Lear belonged to the great traditon of adventurous British travellers, undertaking extensive journeys in Italy and Greece, in Albania, Turkey, and Egypt, in Palestine, and in India. Many of his travels took him through wild and rugged terrain and led to encounters with unusual characters. Extensive quotation from Lear's letters and detailed diaries complement this book.