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Celebrating Bicentenary of Percy Bysshe Shelley's death in Italy

Jane Campion and Julian Sands join tribute to one of the world's greatest Romantic poets.

The Keats-Shelley House in Rome and the Keats-Shelley Association of America will host an online event to mark the 200th anniversary of Percy Bysshe Shelley's death, on Friday 8 July.

Shelley drowned on 8 July 1822 after his boat overturned off the Italian coast while he was travelling back to his home in Lerici after visiting his friend, Byron, in Livorno.

He was only 29 years old. His ashes were later interred at the Non-Catholic Cemetery in Rome, where poet John Keats is also buried.

Jane Campion

Friday's commemorative event will be headlined by Oscar-winning film director and Keats-Shelley 200 Ambassador, Dame Jane Campion, with a global reading of Shelley's last, unfinished poem, The Triumph of Life.

The poem will be read in 15 languages by readers from 26 locations around the world, starting at 13.00 EDT, 18.00 BST, and 19.00 CEST.

Acclaimed English actor and Keats-Shelley 200 Ambassador Julian Sands provides the voice of Shelley in the video story The Last Days of Shelley to be premiered as part of the bicentenary programme.

The event, which will examine the life, death and legacy of Shelley, will be presented by Professor Neil Fraistat and Dr Anna Mercer of the Keats-Shelley Association of America, and Dr Giuseppe Albano, Curator of the Keats-Shelley House in Rome.

Dr Giuseppe Albano (right)

Following the reading, international scholars of Keats and Shelley will present a roundtable discussion on Shelley's life, works, thought, his relationships with Byron and Leigh Hunt, and the intertwining legacy he shares with John Keats.

The panelists comprise Dr Serena Baiesi, Professor Nora Crook, Dr Mathelinda Nagubodi, Professor Andrew Stauffer, and Professor Fernando Valverde. The discussion will be moderated by Professor Neil Fraistat, Dr Anna Mercer, and Dr Giuseppe Albano.

Audience members will be invited to submit questions to the panel in advance of the event. The event concludes with the showing of the film Shelley in Rome, followed by the world premiere of The Last Days of Shelley, a video story with immersive sound featuring the voice of Julian Sands.

This special commemorative event is free but pre-registration is essential by emailing

The event is part of the Keats-Shelley 200 initiative marking the bicentenaries of Keats' and Shelley's deaths in 2021 and 2022 with a varied programme of activities, exhibitions, scholarships and events in the UK and Italy.

Shelley's memory is preserved in the work of the Keats-Shelley House in Rome, a museum which houses many manuscripts, relics and art works related to the poet and overseen by UK charity, the Keats-Shelley Memorial Association and through the academic outreach of the Keats-Shelley Association of America.

General Info

Address Piazza di Spagna, 26, 00187 Roma RM, Italy

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Celebrating Bicentenary of Percy Bysshe Shelley's death in Italy

Piazza di Spagna, 26, 00187 Roma RM, Italy

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