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William blake and the romantic period essay

Fresh ideals came to the fore; in particular, the ideal of freedom, long cherished in Englandwas being extended to every range of human endeavour. As that ideal swept through Europeit became natural to believe that the age of tyrants might soon end. The most notable feature of the poetry of the time is the new role of individual thought and personal feeling.

To Particularize is the alone Distinction of Merit. Poetry was regarded as conveying its own truth; sincerity was the criterion by which it was to be judged. But feeling had begun to receive particular emphasis and is found in most of the Romantic definitions of poetry.

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Another key quality of Romantic writing was its shift from the mimetic, or imitative, assumptions of the Neoclassical era to a new stress on imagination. Samuel Taylor Coleridge saw the imagination as the supreme poetic quality, a quasi-divine creative force that made the poet a godlike being. Imagination, the Divine Vision.

A further sign of the diminished stress placed on judgment is the Romantic attitude to form: Hand in hand with the new conception of poetry and the insistence on a new subject matter went a demand for new ways of writing.

It could not be, for them, the language of feeling, and Wordsworth accordingly sought to bring the language of poetry back to that of common speech.

Nevertheless, when he published his preface to Lyrical Ballads in 1800, the time was ripe for a change: Poetry Blake, Wordsworth, and Coleridge Useful as it is to trace the common elements in Romantic poetry, there was little conformity among the poets themselves. It is misleading to read the poetry of the first Romantics as if it had been written primarily to express their feelings.

Their concern was rather to change the intellectual climate of the age.

  • Poetry was regarded as conveying its own truth; sincerity was the criterion by which it was to be judged;
  • Like many writers of the time Blake was of the working class working as an engraver;
  • It could not be, for them, the language of feeling, and Wordsworth accordingly sought to bring the language of poetry back to that of common speech;
  • Samuel Taylor Coleridge saw the imagination as the supreme poetic quality, a quasi-divine creative force that made the poet a godlike being.

William Blake had been dissatisfied since boyhood with the current state of poetry and what he considered the irreligious drabness of contemporary thought. His early development of a protective shield of mocking humour with which to face a world in which science had become trifling and art inconsequential is visible in the satirical An Island in the Moon written c. His desire for renewal encouraged him to view the outbreak of the French Revolution as a momentous event.

In works such as The Marriage of Heaven and Hell 1790—93 and Songs of Experience 1794he attacked the hypocrisies of the age and the impersonal cruelties resulting from the dominance of analytic reason in contemporary thought.

Here, still using his own mythological characters, he portrayed the william blake and the romantic period essay artist as the hero of society and suggested the possibility of redemption from the fallen or Urizenic condition. William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridgemeanwhile, were also exploring the implications of the French Revolution. Wordsworth, who lived in France in 1791—92 and fathered an illegitimate child there, was distressed when, soon after his return, Britain declared war on the republic, dividing his allegiance.

For the rest of his career, he was to brood on those events, trying to develop a view of humanity that would be faithful to his twin sense of the pathos of individual human fates and the unrealized potentialities in humanity as a whole. His investigation of the relationship between nature and the human mind continued in the long autobiographical poem addressed to Coleridge and later titled The Prelude 1798—99 in two books; 1804 in five books; 1805 in 13 books; revised continuously and published posthumously, 1850.

The Prelude constitutes the most significant English expression of the Romantic discovery of the self as a topic for art and literature.

Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood. Simultaneously, his poetic output became sporadic. In 1802 Wordsworth dedicated a number of sonnets to the patriotic cause.

The death in 1805 of his brother John, who was a captain in the merchant navywas a grim reminder that, while he had been living in retirement as a poet, others had been willing to sacrifice themselves.

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From this time the theme of duty was to be prominent in his poetry. Both Wordsworth and Coleridge benefited from the advent in 1811 of the Regency, which brought a renewed interest in the arts. A Vision; The Pains of Sleep was published in 1816.

Biographia Literaria 1817an account of his own development, combined philosophy and literary criticism in a new way and made an enduring and important contribution to literary theory. His later religious writings made a considerable impact on Victorian readers.

Sir Walter Scottby contrast, was thought of as a major poet for his vigorous and evocative verse narratives The Lay of the Last Minstrel 1805 and Marmion 1808.

  • In their works they were inspired mainly by God, their imagination, and untouched nature;
  • As romantic the poetry of robert burns and william blake in england, the early romantic period thus coincides with what is often called;
  • After a long silence, he returned to poetry with The Parish Register 1807 , The Borough 1810 , Tales in Verse 1812 , and Tales of the Hall 1819 , which gained him great popularity in the early 19th century.

Other verse writers were also highly esteemed. Another admired poet of the day was Thomas Moorewhose Irish Melodies began to appear in 1808. His highly coloured narrative Lalla Rookh: An Oriental Romance 1817 and his satirical poetry were also immensely popular. Charlotte Smith was not the only significant woman poet in this period.

He differs from the earlier Augustans, however, in his subject matter, concentrating on realistic, unsentimental accounts of the life of the poor and the middle classes.

William blake and the romantic period essay

He shows considerable narrative gifts in his collections of verse tales in which he anticipates many short-story techniques and great powers of description. His antipastoral The Village appeared in 1783. After a long silence, he returned to poetry with The Parish Register 1807The Borough 1810Tales in Verse 1812and Tales of the Hall 1819which gained him great popularity in the early 19th century.