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Selected Poetry of Katharine Lee Bates (1859-1929)


from Representative Poetry On-line
Prepared by members of the Department of English at the University of Toronto
from 1912 to the present and published by the University of Toronto Press from 1912 to 1967.
RPO Edited by Ian Lancashire
A UTEL (University of Toronto English Library) Edition
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries
© 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto

Index to poems

America! America!
God mend thine every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!
        (America the Beautiful)
  1. America the Beautiful
  2. Matthew Arnold On hearing him read his Poems in Boston


Notes on Life and Works

Katharine Lee Bates, born August 12, 1859, graduated from Wellesley College in 1880, joined its English Department five years later, and earned a Masters degree there in 1891 following study at Oxford in 1888-89. She published the scholarly work for which she is best known critically, The English Religious Drama, in 1893, and edited many classics of English literature. One of her anthems, America the Beautiful, gave her a greater standing with the public. She published seven volumes of poetry, much of which was unabashedly patriotic: The College Beautiful (1887), Sunshine and Other Verses for Children (1890), America the Beautiful, The Retinue (1918), Yellow Clover (1922), The Pilgrim Ship, and America the Dream (1930). She died March 28, 1929, in Wellesley, Massachusetts.

Biographical information

Given name: Katharine Lee
Family name: Bates
Birth date: 12 August 1859
Death date: 28 March 1929
Nationality: American
Literary period: modern