John Clare was born July 13, 1793, in Helpston, England. In 1820 his first book, Poems Descriptive of Rural Life and Scenery, was published and created a stir. His second volume of poems, The Village Minstrel (1821), attracted little attention. His third met with the same fate. His last book again sold poorly. He began to suffer from fears and delusions and was placed in a private asylum.
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