Rightmove Mansion/Plath Poem Purchase – Poetry News Roundup December 17th

We begin the week here on My Poetic Side with a look at the poet’s former mansion proving to be a big hit on Rightmove. We also have an article about the purchase of a rare Sylvia Plath poem.

Poets Former Home Most Viewed Property on Rightmove

Rightmove, the property site, has created a list of their 2018 most viewed properties. Their data gurus have counted up the individual clicks to see just which properties both in the UK and abroad have been the most popular. The finished list includes a stunning Scottish castle, and the mansion in Marbella where in 2010 One Direction had their debut performance for the X Factor.

The house that has topped the list is a £7 million in Devon with 10 bedrooms, a lake, pool, its own DJ booth and a stable. The property, which is located in Ottery St Mary was once the family home of the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge who wrote “Rime of the Ancient Marnier”.

The ground floor of the entire west wing of the mansion is taken up by a large library that was originally designed to accommodate the 18,000 books owned by Lord Coleridge.

With stunning views of the grounds and woodland beyond, a sweeping driveway, walled garden and cobbled courtyard, it isn’t difficult to see why so many people have clicked to look at the property.

The house was originally built to form part of the religious community of nearby St Mary’s Church and was purchased by the Coleridge family at some point during the 1700’s. The house remained in the family until 2006. It has been modernised, but still contains many of the original features that would have been around when the poet lived there.

Rare Sylvia Plath Poem Purchased by Library

The National Library of Scotland has snapped up a rare poem by Sylvia Plath. The poem was first published by Alan Anderson, the founder of Tragara Press, a Scottish printing company.

This is the first poem that Plath published in her own right, and the National Library want to recognise the role that Anderson had in helping her to do so. The two worked together to ensure that the way the poem would appear in print was exactly as Plath wanted it.

The poem “A Winter Ship” was made into a four-page pamphlet and only 60 copies were ever made by Anderson in 1960. It is believed that Plath sent the poem to friends and family with her Christmas cards. The poem is thought to have been inspired by Boston, the poet’s native town, and the place where she was living with her husband Ted Hughes when she wrote the poem.

By 1960, the husband and wife had moved to London. Anderson approached Plath to say hw much he admired her work and showed her some samples of how the poem might be presented. Plath loved the proofs he sent and wrote back to change a few details, suggesting she would sign them herself and send them out as Christmas greetings.

Anderson continued to operate the printing press from his home in the Highlands until shortly before his death in 2016 when he was 93.

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