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Ernest Dowson
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Poet
    (August 2, 1867-February 23, 1900)
    Born in London, United Kingdom
    Published 'Verses' (1896) and 'Decorations in Verse and Prose' (1899)
    Poems include 'Cynara,' 'Vitae Summa Brevis' and 'Breton Afternoon'
    When he was 23, he became infatuated with 12-year-old Adelaide 'Missie' Foltinowicz, and was devastated when, eight years later, she married another man.
    His friend and fellow poet W.B. Yeats described him as 'timid, silent and a little melancholy.'
    His heavy drinking contributed to his death at an early age.
    In his last days, he was homeless, owning only the clothes he wore and a tattered book of verse.
    He coined the phrases 'days of wine and roses' and 'gone with the wind.'
    According to the Oxford English Dictionary, he provided the earliest known use of the word 'soccer' in written language.
    He was one of the few friends of Oscar Wilde not to abandon him after his conviction for 'gross indecency.'
    T.S. Eliot called him 'the most gifted and technically perfect poet of his age.'

Credit: C. Fishel


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