Did Keats Die A Virgin?

The life of John Keats the man: his family, his friends, and his contemporaries.

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Do you think Keats was a virgin when he died?

Yes
4
33%
No
8
67%
 
Total votes : 12

Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby keatsclose » Tue Nov 17, 2009 3:27 pm

Thanks, Brokenlyre - I'll look for Aileen Ward's book.

I wondered how much Keats's friendship with Mrs Jones might have contibuted to that productive period which led to the writing of
not only Isabella and The Eve of St Agnes but also La Belle Dame Sans Merci. It would be nice to think that, as an older - and possibly
even maternal? - woman she had helped him not only in his poetry but also to sort out difficulties he was experiencing in his relationship
with Fanny.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Raphael » Tue Nov 17, 2009 5:54 pm

keatsclose wrote:Thanks, Brokenlyre - I'll look for Aileen Ward's book.

I wondered how much Keats's friendship with Mrs Jones might have contibuted to that productive period which led to the writing of
not only Isabella and The Eve of St Agnes but also La Belle Dame Sans Merci. It would be nice to think that, as an older - and possibly
even maternal? - woman she had helped him not only in his poetry but also to sort out difficulties he was experiencing in his relationship
with Fanny.


I don't think he had met Fanny at that point. I'm not good with chronology tho.It seems Isabella introduced him to The Eve of At Agnes theme- one of my fave poems!
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Saturn » Tue Nov 17, 2009 7:11 pm

Yes if memory serves he met Isabella Jones before Fanny you're right there I think.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Raphael » Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:48 pm

Saturn wrote:Yes if memory serves he met Isabella Jones before Fanny you're right there I think.


I think so- I'll check again but then some biographers are unsure of when it exactly was when he met Fanny- I think it was after he came back from Scotland. Anyway, Isabella sounded like quite a modern independant woman- she is said to have "intrigued" John! Maybe that's why he kissed her. :)
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Garybills » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:19 pm

This is an interesting topic. Certainly, we know from fellow students that when Keats was a medical student his behaviour was restrained. But did he visit prostitutes, like Brown? We don't know. Did he have sex with Isabella Jones? We know he "warmed" with her. But what does "warmed" mean? Usually it was a phrase attached to sexual behaviour. He spoke of girls on the Isle of Wight being "profligate". But did he indulge? Why take mercury? He knew the risks...
Then there is the question of Miss Brawne. If I recall correctly, Keats wrote, "I should have had her Brown, WHILE I WAS IN HEALTH... Doesn't this suggest that Keats "had" Fanny Brawne while he was in poor health? Perhaps in was not a very successful coupling...
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Saturn » Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:13 pm

I think it's pretty much accepted that he never had her at all, hence that agonised cry, but an interesting thought nonetheless.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Raphael » Wed Jul 21, 2010 11:36 pm

This is an interesting topic. Certainly, we know from fellow students that when Keats was a medical student his behaviour was restrained.


Never of a "low character" his fellow students said. :D

But did he visit prostitutes, like Brown? We don't know.


I doubt it- he hadn't much money- why waste it on such a thing when he could have nice little trysts with dairy maids.. :wink:
And it doesn't seem to John's taste anyway from what he wrote- he was looking for something more meaningful.
I have never seen any evidence that Brown did visit ladies of the night either.


Did he have sex with Isabella Jones? We know he "warmed" with her. But what does "warmed" mean? Usually it was a phrase attached to sexual behaviour. He spoke of girls on the Isle of Wight being "profligate". But did he indulge?


It probably means "heavy petting".

Why take mercury? He knew the risks...


It was a common medicine back then for sore throats and they didn't know how poisonous it was.



Then there is the question of Miss Brawne. If I recall correctly, Keats wrote, "I should have had her Brown, WHILE I WAS IN HEALTH... Doesn't this suggest that Keats "had" Fanny Brawne while he was in poor health? Perhaps in was not a very successful coupling...


I never read it that way before..maybe it means both...that Fanny gave into her passion for him but he was too ill by then to take her up on the offer.
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby chris » Thu Jul 22, 2010 5:39 pm

you read about people in the 19th taking mercury for various ailments, but how exactly did they take it? was it injected? how? might be a dumb question, but i'm curious to know.

i joke with my dad (who is a doctor) that everytime someone back in those days had any sort of medical issue the doctor was brought in and he always said "bleed him". Headache- bleed him. Dandruff- bleed him.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Raphael » Thu Jul 22, 2010 7:30 pm

you read about people in the 19th taking mercury for various ailments, but how exactly did they take it? was it injected? how? might be a dumb question, but i'm curious to know.


It was taken in water or in "blue pills". Sometimes as a vapour.Mercury was used for a long time ( since the ancient times) as a medicine. Strange to us, knowing how toxic it is.

i joke with my dad (who is a doctor) that everytime someone back in those days had any sort of medical issue the doctor was brought in and he always said "bleed him". Headache- bleed him. Dandruff- bleed him


That's another practise that was used for centuries too. Interestingly, one treatment used for centuries- leeches- is now known to be helpful- it is making a comeback I heard.
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Cybele » Sat Jul 24, 2010 6:13 pm

Raphael wrote:
you read about people in the 19th taking mercury for various ailments, but how exactly did they take it? was it injected? how? might be a dumb question, but i'm curious to know.


It was taken in water or in "blue pills". Sometimes as a vapour.Mercury was used for a long time ( since the ancient times) as a medicine. Strange to us, knowing how toxic it is.

i joke with my dad (who is a doctor) that everytime someone back in those days had any sort of medical issue the doctor was brought in and he always said "bleed him". Headache- bleed him. Dandruff- bleed him


That's another practise that was used for centuries too. Interestingly, one treatment used for centuries- leeches- is now known to be helpful- it is making a comeback I heard.


Yes, indeed! -- Several years back a neighbor's hand was saved by the use of leeches at one of the big Cleveland hospitals. Here's a link to an article on their use:http://www.cleveland.com/healthfit/index.ssf/2010/06/leeches_and_maggots_doctors_li.html

As a kid, I used to wade in a lagoon in search of crayfish, regularly emerging from the water with leeches clinging to my toes. While we kids should have been more selective in our choice of wading spots, it was such fun grossing out our mothers! :lol: :lol:
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Raphael » Sat Jul 24, 2010 8:37 pm

Thanks for the link! They are useful little creatures!
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Raphael » Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:13 pm

you read about people in the 19th taking mercury for various ailments, but how exactly did they take it? was it injected? how? might be a dumb question, but i'm curious to know.


Here's some links to the London Science museum's artifacts of Mercury medicines (with photos) :

http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/brought ... s+medicine


http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/brought ... s+medicine


http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/brought ... s+medicine


http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/brought ... 08&image=3
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby chris » Tue Jul 27, 2010 11:52 am

thanks for the links, raphael. most enlightening.
"ive been on the shelf too long" ('A Northern Soul' by the Verve)
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby Raphael » Tue Jul 27, 2010 12:39 pm

chris wrote:thanks for the links, raphael. most enlightening.


Those pills look revolting don't they? I bet they tasted revolting too.
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Did Keats Die A Virgin?

Postby chris » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:04 pm

they do. but then life was a lot grittier back then. but it all seemed conducive to poetic inspiration. i can't imagine how dirty and disease-infested elizabethan england was, but it seemed to push artists to find the beautiful, to escape the grime.
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