T. S. Eliot: Four Quartets

(6489 words)
  • Marianne Thormahlen

T. S. Eliot’s Four Quartets were written between 1935 and 1942 when the poet was in his late 40s and early 50s, an internationally famous man of letters who had not yet attained iconic status. The matter of his age is noteworthy because the Quartets are often thought of as an illustrious ageing poet’s last work of any significance, a kind of grand old man’s testament. In fact, they came into being as a result of, and in constant struggles with, the middle-aged writer’s anxieties about whether he still had anything to say in the first place and if he had, what medium would be suitable for it.

Despite his pontifical manner, Eliot was never complacent about his writing. Always aware of the …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are not a subscriber, please click here to read about membership. All our articles have been written recently by experts in their field, more than 95% of them university professors.

Thormahlen, Marianne. "Four Quartets". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 19 January 2006
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=5073, accessed 30 June 2015.]