According to Independent, IRON MAIDEN frontman Bruce Dickinson attended the unveiling Sunday (August 12) of a gravestone marking the exact resting place of artist and poet William Blake, nearly 200 years after his death.
For many years, Blake's final resting place was lost in the pages of history. His burial at Bunhill Fields cemetery in central London was for years only acknowledged with a simple stone saying he lay "nearby" after the poet and painter died in obscurity in 1827.
After decades of being lost to history, two members of the Blake Society, Luis and Carol Garrido, finally uncovered the exact location of Blake's remains in 2006.
Dickinson called Blake "one of the greatest living English poets, artists." Speaking to the Press Association, he said: "I said 'living,' because if you're into Blake, he never really dies. And I think he, in his way, should be as honored as Shakespeare for his contribution to the English spirit and I suppose a contrarian eccentric Englishness, which is still, thank God, alive and well. All the way from Monty Python to rock music and punk music. It spans generations."
Dickinson added: "William Blake is argumentative. William Blake is controversial. William Blake is individualistic. William Blake is anti-hierarchical society. He's a thoroughly modern poet. Not just a poet, an artist. And I think it speaks to all manner of artistic people, anybody that has an ounce of soul in them couldn't fail to be moved by Blake."
Dickinson was among a few speakers addressing the crowd before the headstone was unveiled. Video footage of his speech can be seen below.