The Byron Journal

'Not in a Christian Church': Westminster Abbey and the Memorialisation of Byron

The Byron Journal (2009), 37, (2), 141–150.

Abstract

This article focuses on the complex history of Byron's memorialisation in Westminster Abbey and elsewhere, a history that brings to the fore the ambivalent memorial function of the Abbey as both a sacred place and a pantheon of fame. The article explores the canonical impasse created, after Byron's death, by the fact that while his scandalous life led the Westminster authorities to refuse to sanction his burial in the Abbey, his cultural stature was too high to be ignored, leading to continued pressure for a Byron memorial in Westminster Abbey. The article focuses on various stages of the longdrawn-out process that finally culminated in the unveiling of a floor memorial to the poet in 1969.

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Author details

Ascari, Maurizio