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John Donne's life story is inextricably tied up with the fabric of a society in the throes of religious persecution. His family had long been subject to the terror inflicted upon Catholics under the reign of Elizabeth I, and while his brother languished in prison, and his mother and uncles fled to exile in Europe, Donne was consumed by the question of his own faith and by trying to figure out what it is that connects human beings - and keeps them apart.
In his biography of Donne, John Stubbs chronicles not only a long and bitter sectarian conflict, but also the love story of a young couple who broke the rules of their society, and paid the ultimate price.
From the raucous streets of late sixteenth-century London to the personal and political intrigues of Donne's family and public life, from the horrors of the Reformation to the delight of Donne's poetry, John Stubbs' book is a vivid, dazzling biography of an extraordinary man, as well as a compelling portrait of England at a time of bewildering transformation..