‘Don’t look at him. He is dangerous to look at,’ said Lady Liddell to her daughter in 1817. Handsome, charismatic, aristocratic and allegedly ‘mad, bad and dangerous to know’, Lord Byron (1788-1824) is one of the most captivating and recognisable figures of the Romantic Age.
His face, figure and appearance added greatly to the appeal of his poetry and the close association of the man with his poetic creations encouraged a wide range of artists to create portraits during his lifetime and to memorialise him after his heroic death in Greece. This book explores Byron’s life through the intriguing stories behind these images and for the first time reproduces in colour all the key paintings, miniatures, sculptures, drawings and sketches, with a selection of prints, cartoons, engravings and other representations. It uses Byron’s own wit with words to recount his attempts to manage his own image through the way he was presented in his portraits, as well as through fashion, weight control and the disguise of his lameness.
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