Readersforum's Blog

March 10, 2013

Rare poem by ‘world’s worst poet’ expected to fetch £3,000 at auction

Scottish poet William McGonagall has been dubbed the world's worst by critics who accuse him of using inappropriate rhythms

Scottish poet William McGonagall has been dubbed the world’s worst by critics who accuse him of using inappropriate rhythms

19th-century poet William Topaz McGonagall, whose works were so detested he was pelted with rotten fish, has last laugh

By Billy Briggs

One of the unpublished works of a music hall performer from Dundee who gained infamy as the world’s worst poet is expected to fetch thousands of pounds at auction.

Edinburgh-born William Topaz McGonagall, a 19th-century weaver and actor who wrote about 200 poems, is widely regarded as the worst poet in English literature.

Although he delighted and appalled audiences, who sometimes threw rotten fish at him, his books remain in print and he is still widely quoted long after his more talented contemporaries have been forgotten.

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