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To Althea, from Prison Summary & Analysis
by Richard Lovelace

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"To Althea, from Prison" is Cavalier poet Richard Lovelace's famous song of devotion and defiance. Writing from jail, the poem's speaker declares that plain old "stone walls" can't truly imprison him: as long as he can adore his beloved Althea and swear his loyalty to King Charles I, his spirit will remain as free as a bird. Lovelace wrote this poem in 1642 during his real-life imprisonment, but it was first published in 1649 in Lovelace's book Lucasta.

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