The Immortal Dinner Competition - the results are in!

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Thanks to everyone who voted for the absent guest to whom John Keats would have most enjoyed chatting at the unique gathering, hosted by Benjamin Robert Haydon in December 1817.

Not surprisingly, the list includes a number of writers and poets, however, the final results show a mix of names, with artists, politicians, fictional characters, journalists, freedom fighters, philosophers and others from the world of music and entertainment.

In FIRST place with 4 nominations, are Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Oscar Wilde; we can only imagine how the conversations would have flowed throughout the evening!

In joint SECOND position with three nominations are Robert Burns, Mary Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, Bob Dylan, John Milton, William Shakespeare, Kamala Harris and Stephen Fry.  Never a lull in the conversation with this line-up of illustrious guests.

Coming in a close THIRD with 2 votes each, are Percy Bysshe Shelley, John-Jacques Rousseau, Josiah Wedgwood, W H Auden, Leigh Hunt, Dante Alighieri, Sir Bob Geldof and Aristophanes.

Each claiming an individual vote, John Keats might have looked forward to a lively and entertaining dinner in the company of the following guests!

Alice Coltrane,
Edith Sitwell,
Scott Fitzgerald,
Sir Les Patterson,
Sylvia Plath,
Orson Welles,
Joy Harjo,
Giacomo Leopardi,
Sir Ivor Roberts,
Noam Chomsky,
Benjamin Zephaniah,
Robert Graves,
Antonio Canova,
Annette Summerskill,
Thomas Chatterton,
Seamus Heaney,
Anna Ricciardi,
Sherlock Holmes,
Dick King-Smith,
Gertrude Bell,
Ryszard Kapuscinski,
Mary Anning,
Laskarina Bouboulina,
Philip K Dick,
Anne Frank,
John Mortimer,
Sir David Attenborough,
W B Yeats,
John Ruskin,
Pliny the Younger,
Nelson Mandela,
Michael Stipe,
Wilfred Owen,
Amelia Earhart,
Emily Brontë,
Joseph Severn,
Jorge Luis Borges,
Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa,
Stella Gibbons,
Allen Ginsberg,
Michelle Obama,
Winston Churchill,
George Frederick Handel,
Freida Kahlo,
Michael Hutchence,
Lizzie Bennett,
Leonard Cohen,
Woody Allen,
Thomas Hardy,
Frankenstein’s Creature,
Thomas Gainsborough,
T S Eliot,
Seamus Heaney,  
Freddie Mercury,
Richard E Grant,
Armistead Maupin,
Essex Hemphill,
Neil Hannon (of Divine Comedy),
Christopher Isherwood,
Marie Lockhart Michiovἁ,
Audre Lorde,
James Boswell,
Aphra Behn,
Anna Karenina,
Ian McMillan (The Barnsley Poet),
William Hazlitt,
Harriet Martineau,
George Elliot (Mary Ann Evans),
Lady Emma Hamilton,
Emily Bronte,
Edward Thomas,
Eavan Boland,
Lord Byron,
Adam Mickiewicz,
Amy Winehouse,
Virginia Woolf. 

A warm thank you to everyone who cast their nominations to make The Immortal Dinner competition such a fitting tribute to literary London at its most vibrant.

A number of the Keats-Shelley 200 activities and events have been postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic, but the programme will go ahead during 2021 and 2022.