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For others with this name, see Francis Thompson (disambiguation).Francis Thompson (16 December 1859 – 13 November 1907) was an English poet and ascetic. After attending college, he moved to London to become a writer, but, in menial work, became addicted to opium, and was a street vagrant for years. A married couple read his poetry and rescued him, publishing his first book Poems in 1893. Thompson lived as an unbalanced invalid in Wales and at Storrington, but wrote three books of poetry, with other works and essays, before dying of tuberculosis in 1907.