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History of the Eighteenth Century in Ten Poems

Ten short podcasts on quirky aspects of eighteenth-century life.
This series of short podcasts offers an alternative history of the eighteenth century. Ten poems were chosen that illustrate the everyday and the extraordinary, the comic and the serious aspects of the period. Each talk begins with a poem, and shows its significance: how a satire on the pleasures of tobacco tells us of the relationship between intoxication and inspiration, or how a poem on apple pie speaks of evolving national identity. The series covers, amongst other things: tobacco, sport, epigrams, children and food. Showcasing a selection of the material in the English Faculty's Digital Miscellanies Index, exploring some of the more surprising ways in which popular collections of verse offer us a glimpse of the social, political and cultural history of their time.

# Episode Title Description People Date
10 Creative Commons Smallpox in poetry Smallpox was rife in the eighteenth century, leaving its mark both on its sufferers, and on the literature of the period. This podcast explores its history in verse. Elizabeth Atkinson 16 Sep 2013
9 Creative Commons The poetry of war Explores the aesthetics and impact of war poetry in the early eighteenth century, focussing on Joseph Addison's poem, The Campaign. Abigail Williams 16 Sep 2013
8 Creative Commons The Ladle: a comic poem Matthew Prior's The Ladle was one of the most popular poems of the eighteenth century. This podcast explores its appeal. Louise Curran 16 Sep 2013
7 Creative Commons Music in miscellanies Much popular music of the eighteenth century is found in poetic miscellanies. But how was it performed? Giles Lewin 16 Sep 2013
6 Creative Commons Pastoral Poetry Introduces the poetry of rural life, and its debt to classical sources. Kathleen Lawton-Trask 16 Sep 2013
5 Creative Commons Politics in poetry This podcast explores the culture of Jacobitism in the eighteenth century, using a popular ballad. John McTague 16 Sep 2013
4 Creative Commons The life of epigrams This podcasts introduces the popular eighteenth century epigram. Dianne Mitchell 16 Sep 2013
3 Creative Commons Petticoats and fashion An introduction to the world of fashion and the politics of the petticoat, seen through the poetry of the time. Elizabeth Atkinson 16 Sep 2013
2 Creative Commons The Joys of Cricket This podcast looks at cricket seen through eighteenth-century eyes, focussing on a poem by James Dance, called 'Cricket: An Heroic Poem.'. Adam Rounce 12 Dec 2011
1 Creative Commons Poetry and Tobacco This podcast looks at the relationship between tobacco and poetic inspiration, through some popular comic poems. Abigail Williams, Laurence Williams, John Clargo 03 Aug 2011