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Thomas Stearns Eliot
(September 26, 1888 - January 4, 1965) U.S.A.- U.K.

T.S. Eliot



T.S. EliotBorn in St Louis, Missouri, to Henry Ware (a businessman) and Charlotte Stearns Eliot (a poetess), and educated at Harvard, the Sorbonne, and Merton College, Oxford, Eliot settled in England on encouragement from Ezra Pound whom he met in 1915.

Before that, while Eliot was studying at the Sorbonne, he had a relationship with the Frenchman Jean Jules Verdenal (1889 - 1915). Verdenal died in the WWI.

A month later Eliot married his first wife, Vivien Haigh-Wood; in 1932 they were formally separated and she finally died in 1947. In 1957 Eliot married his second wife, Valerie Fletcher.

T.S. EliotEliot, who is one of the great figures of 20th century literature, dedicated his Prufrock and Other Observations (1917) to Verdenal's memory, over an epygraph from Dante's Purgatorio that comes from one of Eliot's two favourite sections of the Divine Comedy, Inferno XV and Purgatorio XXVI in which Dante meets sodomites.

Eliot's love for Verdenal is also at the center of his most famous poem, The Waste Land (1922). Eliot received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1947.

T.S. Eliot's signature


Source: excerpts from: Gabriele Griffin, Who's Who in Lesbian and Gay and Writing, Routledge, London, 2002

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