Who is William Topaz Mcgonagall

William Topaz McGonagall (March 1825 – 29 September 1902) was a Scottish weaver, poet and actor. He won notoriety as an extremely bad poet who exhibited no recognition of, or concern for, his peers' opinions of his work.

He wrote about 200 poems, including "The Tay Bridge Disaster" and "The Famous Tay Whale", which are widely regarded as some of the worst in English literature. Groups throughout Scotland engaged him to make recitations from his work, and contemporary descriptions of these performances indicate that many listeners were appreciating McGonagall's skill as a comic music hall character. Collections of his verse remain popular, with several volumes available today.

McGonagall has been lampooned as the worst poet in British history. The chief criti...
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William Topaz Mcgonagall Poems

  • The Late Sir John Ogilvy
    Alas! Sir John Ogilvy is dead, aged eighty-seven,
    But I hope his soul is now in heaven;
    For he was a generous-hearted gentleman I am sure,
    And, in particular, very kind unto the poor. ...
  • The Famous Tay Whale
    'TWAS in the month of December, and in the year l883,
    That a monster whale came to Dundee,
    Resolved for a few days to sport and play,
    And devour the small fishes in the silvery Tay. ...
  • The Wreck Of The Whaler Oscar
    'Twas on the 1st of April, and in the year of Eighteen thirteen,
    That the whaler "Oscar" was wrecked not far from Aberdeen;
    'Twas all on a sudden the wind arose, and a terrific blast it blew,
    And the "Oscar" was lost, and forty-two of a gallant crew. ...
  • An Ode To The Queen On Her Jubilee Year
    Sound drums and trumpets, far and near!
    And Let all Queen Victoria's subjects loudly cheer!
    And show by their actions that they revere,
    Because she's served them faithfully fifty long year! ...
  • The Death Of The Old Mendicant
    There was a rich old gentleman
    Lived on a lonely moor in Switzerland,
    And he was very hard to the wandering poor,
    'Tis said he never lodged nor served them at his door. ...
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Top 10 most used topics by William Topaz Mcgonagall

Great 122 Away 117 God 104 Beautiful 104 Time 97 Night 93 Long 92 Heart 90 Year 88 People 84


William Topaz Mcgonagall Quotes

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Comments about William Topaz Mcgonagall

  • Runmeloop1: the william topaz mcgonagall of logic & reason
  • Suehlawrence: hope you enjoy the dundee book. william topaz mcgonagall does feature in it, however...
  • Mancunianmedic: talking of bad poetry just wondering what "poet and tragedian" william topaz mcgonagall would have made of "the great coronavirus disaster of 2020"
  • Smithtiddy: a famously bad poem that made me cry with laughter: "the famous tay whale", by william topaz mcgonagall (1883) /1
  • Wickedwalnut: some of you make william topaz mcgonagall look like a great poet. that is all.
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Bliss Carman and Richard Hovey Poem
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 by Bliss Carman and Richard Hovey

They that eat the uncrushed grape
Walk with steady heels:
Lo, now, how they stare and gape
Where the poet reels!
He has drunk the sheer divine
Concentration of the vine.


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