He is regarded as one of the major dramatists and poets of the seventeenth century. born June 11, 1572 in London Father, a minister, died before he was born educated at Westminster School by the great classical scholar William Camden worked in his stepfather's trade, bricklaying joined the army, serving in Flanders. returned to England about 1592 worked as an actor and playwright married Anne Lewis on November 14, 1594 Two children
In 1598, wrote what is considered his first great play, Every Man in His Humor. In a 1616 production, William Shakespeare acted in one of the lead roles. Shortly after the play opened, Jonson killed Gabriel Spencer in a duel and was tried for murder. was released by pleading "benefit of clergy“ spent only a few weeks in prison, but shortly after his release was again arrested for failing to pay an actor.
Under King James I, hereceived royal favor and patronage. Over the next fifteen years many of his most famous satirical plays, including Volpone (1606) and The Alchemist (1610), were produced for the London stage. In 1616, he was granted a substantial pension of 100 marks a year, and is often identified as England's first Poet Laureate.
was friends with many of the writers of his day, and many of his most well-known poems include tributes to friends such as Shakespeare, John Donne, and Francis Bacon. died in Westminster in 1637. A tremendous crowd of mourners attended his burial at Westminster Abbey.
“To Celia” was published in 1616 in a collection entitled The Forest. one of the most frequently quoted poems in English literature A Greek named Philostratus actually wrote the lines, and Jonson traslated or paraphrased them.
“On My First Son” wrote this elegy after the death in 1603 of his eldest son, Benjamin, aged seven. The poet addresses the boy, bidding him farewell, and then seeks some meaning for his loss.