Banjo Patterson

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  • Topic: Banjo Paterson, University of Sydney, New South Wales
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  • Published : October 8, 2012
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Andrew Barton “Banjo” Paterson was an Australian bush poet, Journalist and Author. He focused most of his poem’s on Australian life, in the particular area of rural and outback areas, mainly places like Binalong and New South Wales where he grew up as a child. He was mostly famous from poems including Waltzing Matilda, The Man from Snowy River and Clancy of the Overflow.

Banjo was born on the 17th February 1864 in "Narrambla", near Orange, New South Whales. Banjo’s level of education as a child was relatively privileged. At a young age he attended a bush school which was ran by the governess. Then from 1874, he attended Sydney Grammar School, a prestigious school in the heart of Sydney.

After finishing school, Paterson became an article clerk at a Sydney law firm, and was admitted as a solicitor in 1886. Paterson practiced as a solicitor until the early years of the twentieth century, by which time he had also developed a promising literary career. His earliest published work dates from 1885, when he submitted a poem criticising the British war in the Sudan (in which Australian troops were involved) to the Bulletin, a new literary journal with an Australian nationalist focus. Over the next decade the increasingly popular and influential Bulletin provided an important forum for the publication of Paterson's verse, which appeared under the pseudonym ‘The Banjo’, adopted from the name of one of his favourite horses.

By 1895 Banjo had written many poems and such as 'Clancy of the Overflow', 'The Geebung Polo Club', 'The Man from Ironbark', 'How the Favourite Beat Us' and 'Saltbush Bill' were so popular with readers that Angus & Robertson, published the collection, “The Man From Snowy River, and Other Verses”, in October. From which nearly all the context from these poems came from Banjo’s love for the out back in his home town Narrambla. The title-poem had swept the colonies when it was first published in April 1890. The book had a remarkable reception: the...
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