Alfred Domett

(20 May 1811 – 2 November 1887 / Camberwell, Surrey)

Biography of Alfred Domett

Alfred Domett poet

He was born at Camberwell, Surrey; his father was a ship-owner. He entered St John's College, Cambridge, but left the university in 1833.

Domett published one or two volumes of poetry from 1833, and contributed several poems to Blackwood's Magazine, one of which, A Christmas Hymn, attracted attention. He was called to the bar, but for ten years he lived a life of ease in London, where he became the intimate friend of Robert Browning , of whose poem, Waring, he was the subject. An account of the friendship between the two men appeared in The Contemporary Review for January 1905, by W. H. Griffin.

Among his books of poetry, Ranolf and Amohia, a South Sea Day Dream (1872), about Maori life, is the best known, and Flotsam and Jetsam (1877) is dedicated to Browning.

Alfred Domett's Works:

Ranolf and Amohia, a South Sea Day Dream (1872)
Flotsam and Jetsam (1877)

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A Maori Girl's Song

"Alas, and well-a-day! they are talking of me still:
By the tingling of my nostril, I fear they are talking ill;
Poor hapless I -- poor little I -- so many mouths to fill --
   And all for this strange feeling -- O, this sad, sweet pain!

"O! senseless heart -- O simple! to yearn so, and to pine
For one so far above me, confest o'er all to shine,
For one a hundred dote upon, who never can be mine!
   O, 'tis a foolish feeling -- all this fond, sweet p

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