Sir John Denham (1615-69) courtier, politician, diplomat and wit, was a highly regarded poet in his own time and for well over a century after his death. Towards the end of his life, in 1664, John Dryden praised the “majesty of the style” of Denham’s best-known poem, Cooper’s Hill, saying that it “ever will be the exact standard of good writing”. Half a century later, in 1713, Alexander Pope echoed Dryden’s praise, referring in Windsor-Forest to “majestic Denham”, and proclaiming that: “On Cooper’s Hill eternal Wreaths shall grow,/ While lasts the Mountain, or while Thames shall flow” (265-6). Towards the end of the eighteenth century, in his Life of Denham, 1779, Samuel Johnson …
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Gordon, Ian. "Sir John Denham". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 13 June 2007
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