Schroeder, D; Singer, P
(CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS, 2011-04-01)
Dying before one’s time has been a prominent theme in classic literature and poetry. Catherine Linton’s youthful death in Wuthering Heights leaves behind a bereft Heathcliff and generations of mourning readers. The author herself, Emily Brontë, died young from tuberculosis. John Keats’ Ode on Melancholy captures the transitory beauty of 19th century human lives too often ravished by early death. Keats also died of tuberculosis, aged 25. “The bloom, whose petals nipped before they blew, died on the promise of the fruit” is how Percy Bysshe Shelley expressed his grief over Keats’ death. Emily Dickinson wrote So Has a Daisy Vanished, being driven into depression by the early loss of loved ones from typhoid and tuberculosis.