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Mine Own Familiar Friend

The Relationship between Gerard Hopkins and Robert Bridges

William Robert Adamson

Mine Own Familiar Friend adds a new dimension to Hopkins Studies through its exploration of the complex and sometimes confounding friendship between the Jesuit priest and poet Gerard Hopkins and the editor of his first collected works, the poet and critic Robert Bridges. The divide between the two men is evident in almost every sphere of their lives, in their approach to poetry, reading, criticism and language. Based upon the primary texts of the letters, poetry and critical writings of the two men, the book is aimed at both an academic and a more generalist audience: Hopkins scholars and those readers of Hopkins’s poetry who may want to know more about this unique modernist poet whose collected works were only published, thanks to Bridges, some twenty-nine years after his death.

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A Brief Chronology of Hopkins’s Life

Extract

1844

Born at Stratford, Essex, on 28th July, the eldest of what would be nine children.

1852

The Hopkins family moves to 9 Oak Hill Park, Hampstead.

1854

Hopkins enrols as a boarder at Highgate School, remaining there until 1862. He wins the school’s Poetry Prize in 1860 and one of his teachers is Richard Watson Dixon, a poet and Keats enthusiast.

1857

Hopkins tours southern Germany with his father.

1860

Hopkins tours Belgium and the Rhineland with his father and brother.

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