The brightest star at the court of King Charles II, John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester (1647-80), lived a life of reckless debauchery and sexual adventuring that led to his death at the age of thirty-three - described by Samuel Johnson as having 'blazed out his youth and health in lavish voluptuousness'. Rochester was also one of the wittiest and most complex poets of the seventeenth-century, writing comic verse, scurrilous satires and highly explicit erotica - from the bawdy portrait of vice in The Maimed Debauchee and the tender passion of 'Absent from thee I languish still' to the comic world-weariness of Upon Nothing and A Satyr against Mankind, which mocks human follies. With endless literary disguises, rhymes and alliteration, humour and humanity, Rochester's poems hold up a mirror to the extravagances and absurdities of his age.
This collects 50 of the bawdy Wilmot's best poems, along with textual notes, a first line index, and other goodies. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.