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'To the poet, if to any man, it must be justly conceded to be estimated by what he has written rather than by what he has done, and to be judged by the productions of his genius rather than by the circumstances of his outward life.' At the time of his death, John Keats (1795–1821) was often unfavourably appraised, not only with regard to his poetry, but also his character. In this 1848 collection of his letters, the first of its kind, editor Richard Monckton Milnes (1809–85) sets out to show the poet's true colours through his personal correspondence. Adding insightful commentary and context, he builds up a portrait of an extraordinary young man. Keats' epistolary style is often humorous and salted with miniature flights of fantasy, but he is never far from the monetary concerns that dogged him. Volume 1 charts his early life up to 1819.