Bowles, William Lisle, 1762–1850, English poet, cleric, and literary critic. In 1804 he became vicar of Bremhill, Wiltshire, in 1818 chaplain to the prince regent, and in 1828 canon residentiary of Salisbury Cathedral. He won the admiration of Coleridge with the melancholy, rather emotional verse included in Fourteen Sonnets (1789). Bowles's other poetry includes The Battle of the Nile (1799), The Sorrows of Switzerland (1801), and The Spirit of Discovery (1804). In 1806 Bowles published an edition of Pope that was highly critical of the poet and his work; this led to an acrimonious controversy in which Bowles was vigorously assailed by Byron.
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