John Keats was an English poet of the romantic period. Keats's poetry deals with joy in the beauty of this world, sorrow over t its inevitable passing, and attempts to find bridges between the world we know and the eternal world. Keats was born in London in 1795, son of a livery- stable keeper. At school at Enfield, Keats became the friend of Charles Cowden Clarke, the headmaster's son, who encouraged his early learning. Apprenticed to a surgeon (1811), Keats came to know Leigh Hunt and his literary circle. Even though he passed his medical examination, he never practiced and in 1816 he gave up surgery to write poetry. His first volume of poems, which he dedicated to Hunt, appeared in 1817. They received poor reviews and ruined Keats's reputation. He continued to write and his final and best volume of poems appeared in 1820. By that time, however, he had contacted tuberculosis, probably from nursing his brother Tom, who died in 1818. Keats sailed for
, hoping that a warmer climate might improve his health, but it was too late. He died in Rome, shortly after the publications of "Lamia, Isabella, The Eve of St. Agnes, and other Poems, in 1820.