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Seamus Heaney
Death of a Naturalist


The 1966 publication of Death of a Naturalist, Seamus Heaney’s debut collection, announced the arrival of an exceptional new talent. Its fresh, memorable poems mined the author’s rural childhood in Northern Ireland with such vivid animation that they rapidly achieved a wide and devoted readership that was uncommon for the poetry of any period. Winner of a Cholmondeley Award, a Somerset Maugham Award and the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, Death of a Naturalist marked the beginning of Seamus Heaney’s remarkable life in literature with poems of lasting impact – ‘Digging’, ‘Mid-Term Break’ and ‘Blackberry Picking’ among them.

‘The power and precision of his best poems are a delight, and as a first collection Death of a Naturalist is outstanding’ Christopher Ricks, New Statesman