Christs Victory In Heaven

Coleridge and a momentary inspiration behind a never acted upon plan by Robert Southey to found a utopia in the colonies. The artist John Flaxman composed a pen and wash drawing titled Despair offering a bowl of poison to Chatterton, presently hanging in the British Museum. The Victorians recharacterized Chatterton as saintly, ignoring his topics of sex and drink, and another portrait by Henry Wallis fashioned Chatterton a martyr of sorts.

The poet remained in the public eye through various biographies and a definitive two-volume edition of his works by Donald S. Hall in 1971. Peter Ackroyd's 1987 novel, titled simply Chatterton, aroused renewed interest, as did a collection of critical essays in 1999 edited by Nick Groom. His childhood home can be spotted on Pile Street in Bristol, across from St. Mary Redcliffe, still the largest parish church in the country. Although his works are out of print, libraries still have copies, and poems and excerpts, including a roundelay, or song, from "Aella," are available in electronic version.

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