Shelley was an important member of the early romantic movement writing numerous works of
lyric poetry and several long narrative poems.
He attended Eton, unhappily, and Oxford but was soon sent down for opposing religious and
political conventions in his early publications.
At age 19, he married Harriet Westbrook and moved to the English lake district but he left
her after 3 years to form a household with Mary Wollstonecraft. They lived briefly in
Switzerland where he met Byron. Shelley wrote several of his more mature works both there
and upon his return to England.
Harriet drowned herself in 1816 and Shelley subsequently married Mary moving to Marlow. They
subsequently moved to Italy where they lived in several cities in turn finally moving to
Lerici. In 1822, he was drowned when his schooner sank in a storm; and his body was
cremated on the beach at Viareggio.
Shelley was highly regarded by his circle but, owing to his perceived radicalism, his
works did not receive wider admiration until well after his death.