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Chapter III The Romantic Period

The Romantic Period began in 1798 and ended in 1832. Two important revolutions: the rench Revolution and the !nglish "ndustrial Revolution. The Romantic #ovement$ whether in !ngland$ %erman& or rance$ e'pressed a more or less negative attitude toward the e'isting social and political conditions that came with industriali(ation and the growing importance o) the bourgeoisie. The Romantics$ who were deepl& immersed in the most violent phase o) the transition )rom a decadent )eudal to a capitalist econom&$ saw both the corruption and in*ustice o) the )eudal societies and the )undamental inhumanit& o) the economic$ social and political )orces o) capitalism. "n essence Romanticism designates a literar& and philosophical theor& which tends to see the individual as the ver& center o) all li)e and all e'perience. "t also places the individual at the center o) art$ ma+ing literature most valuable as an e'pression o) his or her uni,ue )eelings and particular attitudes$ and valuing its accurac& in portra&ing the individual-s e'periences. The Romantic period is an age o) poetr&. .la+e$ /ordsworth$ 0oleridge$ .&ron$ 1helle& and 2eats are the ma*or Romantic poets. The& started a rebellion against the neoclassical literature$ which was later regarded as the poetic revolution. /ordsworth and 0oleridge were the ma*or representatives o) this movement. The& e'plored new theories and innovated new techni,ues in poetr& writing. The& saw poetr& a healing energ&3 the& believed that poetr& could puri)& both individual souls and the societ&. /ordsworth-s theor& o) poetr& is calling )or simple themes drawn )rom humble li)e e'pressed in the language o) ordinar& people. /ordsworth de)ines the poet as a 4man spea+ing to men$5 and poetr& as 4the spontaneous over)low o) power)ul )eelings$ which originates in emotion recollected in tran,uilit&.5 "magination$ de)ined b& 0oleridge$ is the vital )acult& that creates new wholes out o) disparate elements. "t is in solitude$ in communion with the natural universe$ that man can e'ercise this most valuable o) )aculties$ the imagination. 6ature$ )or the most in)luential 18 th7centur& writers$ was more something to be seen than something to be +nown. .ut )or the Romantics it is *ust the opposite. The natural world comes to the )ore)ront o) the poetic imagination. 6ature is not onl& the ma*or source o) poetic imager&$ but also provides the dominant sub*ect matter. /ordsworth is the closest to the nature. 8e conceives o) nature as 4the nurse9the guide$ the guardian o) m& heart$ and soul9 :) all m& moral being.5 "n his view$ the natural world is the dominant in)luence in changing people-s sensibilities: nature to him is a source o) mental cleanliness and spiritual understanding3 it is a teacher3 it is the stepping stone between #an and %od. ;a+eside poets: /illiam /ordsworth$ 0oleridge and 1outhe& The Romantic period is also a great age o) prose. /illiam 8a(litt <17787183=> The two ma*or novelists o) the period are ?ane @usten and /alter 1cott. %othic novel$ a t&pe o) romantic )iction that predominated in the late eighteenth centur&$ was one phase o) the Romantic movement. "ts principal elements are violence$ horror$ and the supernatural$ which strongl& appeal to the reader-s emotion. /ith its descriptions o) the dar+$ irrational side o) human nature$ the %othic )orm has e'erted a great in)luence over the writers o) the Romantic period. William Blake /illiam .la+e <17A771827> was born and brought up in ;ondon. Through all his li)e$ .la+e had

been both a poet and an engraver. 8owever$ his genius in poetr& remained un+nown in his li)etime$ he was recogni(ed onl& posthumousl&. ;iteraril& .la+e was the )irst important Romantic poet$ showing a contempt )or the rule o) reason$ opposing the classical tradition o) the 18 th centur&$ and treasuring the individual-s imagination. The Songs of Innocence <18=9> is a lovel& volume o) poems$ presenting a happ& and innocent world$ though not without its evils and su))erings. "n this volume$ .la+e$ with his eager ,uest )or new poetic )orms and techni,ues$ bro+e completel& with the traditions o) the 18 th centur&. 8e e'perimented in meter and rh&me and introduced bold metrical innovations which could not be )ound in the poetr& o) his contemporaries. 8is Songs of Experience <179B> paints a di))erent world$ a world o) miser&$ povert& disease$ war and repression with a melanchol& tone. The benighted !ngland becomes the world o) the dar+ wood and o) the weeping prophet. The orphans o) 48ol& Thursda&5 are now 4)ed with cold and usurious hand. The little chimne&7sweeper sings 4notes o) woe5 while his parents go to church and praise 4%od C his Priest C 2ing5777the ver& instruments o) their repression. "n 4;ondon5 the cit& is no longer a paradise$ but becomes the seat o) povert& and despair$ o) man alienated )rom his true sel). @ number o) poems )rom the Songs of Innocence also )ind a counterpart in the Songs of Experience. or instance$ the 4"n)ant ?o&5 is matched with the 4"n)ant 1orrow5 and the pure 4;amb5 is paired with the )laming 4T&ger.5 The two boo+s hold the similar sub*ect7matter$ but the tone$ emphasis and conclusion di))er. 0hildhood is central to .la+e-s concern in the Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience$ and this concern gives the two boo+s a strong social and historical re)erence. The two 40himne& 1weeper5 poems are good e'amples to reveal the relation between an economic circumstance$ i.e. the e'ploitation o) child labor$ and an ideological circumstance$ i.e. the role pla&ed b& religion in ma+ing people compliant to e'ploitation. The poem )rom the Songs of Innocence indicates the conditions which ma+e religion a consolation$ a prospect o) 4illusor& happiness35 the poem )rom the Songs of Experience reveals the true nature o) religion which helps bring miser& to the poor children. .la+e writes his poems in plain and direct language. 8is poems o)ten carr& the l&ric beaut& with immense compression o) meaning. 8e distrusts the abstractness and tends to embod& his views with visual images. 1&mbolism in wide range is also a distinctive )eature o) his poetr&. The Tyger$ appearing also in the 1ongs o) !'perience$ is one o) .la+e-s better +nown poems. The apparentl& simple ,uestions o) curiosit& and pu((lement$ raised one a)ter another but le)t unanswered$ produce the e))ect o) an odd mi'ture o) the simple and the childli+e with the serious and the thought)ul$ that characteri(es most o) .la+e-s earlier l&rics. There is also a touch o) s&mbolism and m&sticism her that prevails over the poet-s later Prophetic .oo+s. Selected Readings: 1. The Chimney Sweeper ( rom Songs of Innocence! ". The Chimney Sweeper (from Songs of Experience!

William Wordsworth /illiam /ordsworth <177=718A=> had a long poetic career. 8is )irst volumes < Descriptive Sketches, an Evening Walk, 1793> were written in the tradition o) the 18th7centur& )eeling )or

natural description. .ut the Lyrical Ballads di))ers in mar+ed wa&s )rom his earl& poetr&$ notabl& uncompromising simplicit& o) much o) the language$ the strong s&mpath& not merel& with the poor in general but with particular$ dramati(ed e'amples o) them$ and the )usion o) natural description with e'pressions o) inward states o) mind. The poems /ordsworth added to the 18== edition o) the ;&rical .allads are among the best o) his achievements. The Prelude$ which began in 179=s$ was completed in 18=A and$ a)ter substantial revision$ published posthumousl& in 18A=. #an& critics ran+ it as /ordsworth-s greatest wor+. "n 18=7 Poems in Two Dolumes was published the wor+ contains much o) /ordsworth-s )inest verse$ notabl& the super 4:de: "ntimations o) "mmortalit&$5 the autobiographical narrative 4Resolution and "ndependence$5 and man& o) his well7+nown sonnets. @nd The !'cursion was published in 181B. @ccording to the sub*ects$ /ordsworth-s short poems can be classi)ied into two groups: poems about nature and poems about human li)e. /ordsworth is regarded as a 4worshipper o) nature.5 8e can penetrate to the heart o) things and give the reader the ver& li)e o) nature. @s he is aware o) his own sublime communion with all things$ nature becomes an inspiriting )orce o) rapture$ a power that reveals the wor+ings o) the soul. To /ordsworth$ nature acts as a substitute )or imaginative and intellectual engagement with the development o) embodied human beings in their diverse circumstances. "t-s nature that gives him 4strength and +nowledge )ull o) peace.5 /ordsworth thin+s that common li)e is the onl& sub*ect o) literar& interest. The *o&s and sorrows o) the common people are his themes. 8is s&mpath& alwa&s goes to the su))ering poor. /ordsworth is a poet in memor& o) the past. To him$ li)e is a c&clical *ourne&. /ordsworth-s deliberate simplicit& and re)usal to decorate the truth o) e'perience produced a +ind o) pure and pro)ound poetr& which no other poet has ever e,ualed. "n de)ense o) his unconventional theor& o) poetr&$ /ordsworth wrote a 4Pre)ace5 to the second edition o) the ;&rical .allads$ which appeared in 18=1. 8is premise was that the source o) poetic truth is the direct e'perience o) the senses. Poetr&$ he asserted$ originates )rom 4emotion recollected in tran,uilit&.5 Re*ecting the contemporar& emphasis on )orm and an intellectual approach that drained poetic writing o) strong emotion$ he maintained that the scenes and events o) ever&da& li)e and the speech o) ordinar& people were the raw material o) which poetr& could and should be made. /illiam /ordsworth is the leading )igure o) the !nglish romantic poetr&$ the )ocal poetic voice o) the period. 8is is a voice o) searchingl& comprehensive humanit& and one that inspires his audience to see the world )reshl&$ s&mpatheticall& and naturall&. The most important contribution he has made is that he has not onl& started the modern poetr&$ the poetr& o) the growing inner sel)$ but also changed the course o) !nglish poetr& b& using ordinar& speech o) the language and b& advocating a return to nature. Selected Readings: 1. I Wandered lonely as a Clo#d ". Composed #pon Westminster Bridge$ Septem%er &$ 1'(" &. She )welt *mong the +ntrodden Ways ,. The Solitary Reaper Sam#el Taylor Coleridge

1amuel Ta&lor 0oleridge-s <17727183B> poems can be divided into two groups: the demonic and the conversational. The )irst group includes the poets three masterpieces: 4The Rime o) the @ncient #ariner5 tells an adventurous stor& o) a sailor who +ills an albatross$ is punished in the wa& the other sailor died o) thirst$ and runs his ship home when he repented )inall&3 40hristabel5 is about a tale o) a serpent disguised as a beauti)ul lad& to victimi(e an innocent maiden3 and 42ubla 2han5 describes the pleasure dome o) the 2han$ images o) a river$ and other marvelous scenes$ all restored out o) a dream but with onl& AB lines surviving. The group is characteri(ed b& visionar& memor&$ supernatural happenings$ and magic powers which are )antastic$ and in some places horrable$ but also charming in their own wa&. The second group e'presses the poet-s thought in a seemingl& conversation. or e'ample$ 4 rost at #idnight$5 the most important poem o) the group$ is a record o) his personal thought in a midnight solitude on his in)ant son$ and 4Ee*ection: @n :de5 is also an intimate personal piece in which the poet utters his innermost thoughts and sentiments. This group spea+s more directl& o) an allied theme$ the desire to go home$ and to 4an improved in)anc&.5 42ubla 2han5 was composed in a dream a)ter 0oleridge too+ the opium. The poet was reading about 2ubla 2han when he )ell asleep. The images o) the river$ o) the magni)icent palace and other marvelous scenes deposited in his unconsciousness were e'pressed into about two or three hundred lines. .ut when he was writing them down$ a stranger interrupted him and the vision was never recaptured. :nl& AB lines survived. 0oleridge is one o) the )irst critics to give close critical attention to language$ maintaining that the true end o) poetr& is to give pleasure 4through the medium o) beaut&.5 8e sings highl& /ordsworth-s 4purit& o) language$5 4deep and subtle thoughts$5 4per)ect truth to nature5 and his 4imaginative power.5 .ut he denies /ordsworth-s claim that there is no essential di))erence between the language o) poetr& and the language spo+en b& common people. "n anal&(ing 1ha+espeare$ 0oleridge emphasi(es the philosophic aspect$ reading more into the sub*ect than the te't and going deeper into the inner realit& than onl& caring )or the outer )orm. 0oleridge was esteemed b& some o) his contemporaries and is generall& recogni(ed toda& as a l&rical poet and literar& critic o) critic o) the )irst ran+. 8is poetic themes range )rom the supernatural to the domestic. 8is treatises$ lectures$ and compelling conversational powers made him one o) the most in)luential !nglish literar& critics and philosophers o) the 19th centur&. Selected Reading: -#%la -han .eorge .ordon Byron (1/''01'",! :n the whole$ .&ron-s poetr& is one o) e'perience. 8is heroes are more or less surrogates o) himsel). Childe Harold s !ilgri"age is such an e'ample. The poem is about a gloom&$ passionate &oung wanderer who escaped )rom the societ& he disli+ed and traveled around the continent$ ,uesting )or )reedom. "t teems with all +inds o) recogni(able )eatures o) Romantic poetr&777the medieval$ the outcast )igure$ love o) nature$ hatred o) t&rann&$ preoccupation with the remote savage$ and so on. "t also contains man& vivid and e'otic descriptive passages on mountains$ rivers$ and seas. /ith his strong passion )or libert& and his intense hatred )or all t&rants$ .&ron shows his s&mpath& )or the oppressed Portuguese under rench occupation3 he gives his strong support to the 1panish people )ighting )or their national independence3 he laments over the )allen

%reece$ e'pressing his ardent wish that the suppressed %ree+ people should win their )reedom3 he glori)ies the rench Revolution and condemns the despotic 6apoleon period3 and he appeals )or the libert& o) the oppressed nations$ while e'alting the great )ighters )or )reedom in histor&. Don #$an is .&ron-s masterpiece$ a great comic epic o) the earl& 19 th centur&. "t is a poem based on a traditional 1panish legend o) a great lover and seducer o) women. "n the conventional sense$ ?uan is immoral$ &et .&ron ta+es this poem as the most moral. 8e once wrote to his )riend li+e this: 4@s to FEon ?uan-G$ it ma& be pro)ligate$ but is it not li)eH5 @nd .&ron invests in ?uan the moral positives li+e courage$ generosit& and )ran+ness$ which$ according to .&ron$ are virtues neglected b& the modern societ&. "n addition$ though Eon ?uan is the central )igure and all the threads o) the stor& are woven around him$ he and his adventures onl& provide the )ramewor+3 the poet-s true intention is$ b& ma+ing use o) ?uan-s adventures$ to present a panoramic view o) di))erent t&pes o) societ&. .&ron puts into Eon ?uan his rich +nowledge o) the world and the wisdom gained )rom e'perience. "t presents brilliant pictures o) li)e in its various stages o) love$ *o&$ su))ering$ hatred and )ear. The uni)&ing principle in Don #$an is the basic ironic theme o) appearance and realit&$ i.e. what things seem to be and what the& actuall& are. .&ron-s satire on the !nglish societ& in the later part o) the poem can be compared with Pope-s3 and his satire is much less personal than that o) Pope-s. )or .&ron is here attac+ing not a personal enem& but the whole h&pocritical societ&. @nd the diverse materials and the clash emotions gathered in the poem are harmoni(ed b& .&ron-s insight into the di))erence between li)e-s appearance and its actualit&. @s a leading Romanticist$ .&ron-s chie) contribution is his creation o) the 4 Byronic hero$5 a pro#d$ mysterio#s re%el ig#re o no%le origin. /ith immense superiorit& in his passions and powers$ this .&ronic hero would carr& on his shoulders the burden o) righting all the wrongs in a corrupted societ&$ and would rise single7handedl& against an& +ind o) t&rannical rules either in government$ in religion$ or in moral principles with uncon,uerable wills and ine'haustible energies. The con)lict is usuall& one o) rebellious individuals against out worn social s&stems and conventions. 1uch a hero appears )irst in Childe 1arold2s Pilgrimage$ and then )urther developed in later wor+s such as the %riented Tales, &anfred$ and Don #$an in di))erent guises. The )igure is$ to some e'tent$ modeled on the li)e and personalit& o) .&ron himsel)$ and ma+es .&ron )amous both at home and abroad. .&ron-s poetr& has great in)luence on the literature o) the whole world. @cross !urope$ patriots and painters and musicians are all inspired b& him. Poets and novelists are pro)oundl& in)luenced b& his wor+. @ctuall& .&ron has enriched !uropean poetr& with an abundance o) ideas$ images$ artistic )orms and innovations. 8e stands with 1ha+espeare and 1cott among the .ritish writers who e'ert the greatest in)luence over the mainland o) !urope. Selected Readings: 1. Song or the 3#ddites This is one o) the two poems written b& .&ron to show his support o) the ;uddites$ who destro&ed the machines in their protest against unemplo&ment. The poet-s great s&mpath& )or the wor+ers in their struggle against the capitalists is clearl& shown. ". The Isles o .reece ( rom )on 4#an$ III! <Eon ?uan$ the masterpiece o) .&ron$ is a long satirical poem. "ts hero ?uan is an aristocratic libertine$ amiable and charming to ladies. 8e )irst )alls in love with a married woman ?ulia.

The a))air is soon discovered and ?uan is sent abroad. There happens a shipwrec+3 ?uan is tossed into the sea and )inall& cast on the seashore o) a %ree+ island. 8e is saved b& 8aidee$ the pure and beauti)ul daughter o) pirate. The& )all in love$ but soon 8aidee-s )ather returns and )orce)ull& separates them. 8aidee dies o) a bro+en heart$ while ?uan is sold as a slave to 0onstantinople where a 1ultana ta+es )anc& to him. ?uan managed to escape and *oined the Russian @rm& which is besieging the town "smail. @)ter the victor&$ he sent news to 1t. Petersburg and is )avored b& !mpress 0atherine who sent him bac+ to !ngland on a political mission. The last part satiri(es the political and social conditions o) !ngland. The poem was not completed3 originall& .&ron intended to have ?uan )ight and die in the rench Revolution. The )ollowing section$ 4The "sles o) %reece$5 is ta+en )rom 0anto """$ which is sung b& a %ree+ singer at the wedding o) Eon ?uan and 8aidee. "n the earl& 19 th centur&$ %reece was under the rule o) Tur+. .& contrasting the )reedom o) ancient %reece and the present enslavement$ the poet appealed to people to struggle )or libert&.> Percy Bysshe Shelley (1/5"01'""! 1helle& grew up with violent revolutionar& ideas under the in)luence o) the )ree thin+ers li+e 8ume and %odwin$ so he held a li)e long aversion to cruelt&$ in*ustice$ authorit&$ institutional religion and the )ormal shams o) respectable societ&$ condemning war$ t&rann& and e'ploitation. 8e believed that his age was one o) the war o) the oppressed against the oppressors. 8e )elt that the e'isting despotic governments could be overthrown b& revolution$ and he showed a constant attention to the development o) such movements. @ctuall& he dedicated all his li)e to the war against in*ustice and oppression. 8owever$ under the in)luence o) 0hristian humanism$ 1helle& too+ interest in social re)orms. 8e reali(ed that the evil was also in man-s mind. Thus he warned that even a)ter a revolution$ i.e. a)ter the restoration o) human moralit& and creativit&$ the evil deep in man-s heart might again be loosed. 1o he predicated that onl& through gradual and suitable re)orms o) the e'isting institutions could benevolence be universall& established and none o) the evil would survive in this 4genuine societ&$5 where people could live together happil&$ )reel& and peace)ull&. 1helle& e'pressed his love )or )reedom and his hatred toward t&rann& in several o) his l&rics such as 4:de to ;ibert&$5 4:de to 6aples$5 41onnet: !ngland in 18195 and so on. :ne o) 1helle&-s greatest political l&rics is 4#en o) !ngland.5 "t is not onl& a war cr& calling upon all wor+ing people to rise up against their political oppressors$ but an address to them pointing out the intolerable in*ustice o) economic e'ploitation. The poem was later to become a rall&ing song o) the .ritish 0ommunist Part&. #an& critics regard 1helle& as one o) the greatest o) all !nglish poets. The& point especiall& to his l&rics. .est o) all the well7+nown l&ric pieces is 1helle&-s 4:de to the /est /ind5 <1819>3 here 1helle&-s rhapsodic and declamator& tendencies )ind a sub*ect per)ectl& suited to them. The autumn wind$ bur&ing the dead &ear$ preparing )or a new 1pring$ becomes an image o) 1helle& himsel)$ as he would want to be$ in its )reedom$ its destructive7constructive potential$ its universalit&. 4" )all upon the thorns o) li)eI " bleedI5 calls 1helle& that could not bear being )ettered to the humdrum realities o) ever&da&I The whole poem has a logic o) )eeling$ a not easil& anal&(able progression that leads to the triumphant$ hope)ul and convincing conclusion: 4") /inter comes$ can 1pring be 1pring be )ar behindH5 1helle&-s greatest achievement is his )our7act poetic drama$ Prometheus Jnbound <182=>.

@ccording to the %ree+ m&tholog&$ Prometheus$ the champion o) humanit&$ who has stolen the )ire )rom 8eaven$ is punished b& Keus to be chained on #ount 0aucasus and su))ers the vulture-s )eeding on his liver. 1helle& based his drama on Prometheus .ound b& @esch&lus$ in which Prometheus reconciles with the t&rant Keus: Radical and revolutionar& as 1helle&$ he wrote in the pre)ace: 4"n truth$ " was averse )orm a catastrophe so )eeble as that reconciling the 0hampion with the :ppressor o) #an+ind.5 1o he gave a totall& di))erent interpretation$ trans)orming the compromise into a liberation. /ith the strong support o) !arth$ his mother3 @sia$ his bride and the help )rom Eemogorgon and 8ercules$ Keus is driven )rom the throne$ Prometheus is unbound. The pla& is an e'ultant wor+ in praise o) human+ind-s potential$ and 1helle& himsel) recogni(ed it as 4the most per)ect o) m& products. 1helle& is one o) the leading Romantic poets$ an intense and original l&rical poet in the !nglish language. ;i+e .la+e$ he has a reputation as a di))icult poet: erudite $ imagisticall& comple'$ )ull o) classical and m&thological allusions. 8is st&le abounds in personi)ication and metaphor and other )igures o) speech which describe vividl& what we see and )eel$ or e'press what passionatel& moves us. Selected Readings: 1. * Song: 6en o 7ngland This poem was written in 1819$ the &ear o) the Peterloo #assacre. "t is un,uestionabl& one o) 1helle&-s greatest political l&rics. "t is not onl& a war cr& calling upon all wor+ing people o) !ngland to rise up against their political oppressors$ but also an address to point out to them the intolerable in*ustice o) economic e'ploitation. ". 8de to the West Wind "t is one o) 1helle&-s best +nown l&rics. The poet descri%es vividl& the activities o) the /est /ind on the earth$ in the sky and on the sea and then e9presses his env& )or the boundless )reedom o) the west wind and his wish to be )ree li+e the wind and to scatter his words among man+ind. The celebrated )inal line o) the poem$ 4") /inter comes$ can 1pring be )ar behindH5 has o)ten been cited to illustrate 1helle&-s optimistic belie) in the )uture o) man+ind 1helle& e#logi:ed the power)ul west wind and e9pressed his eagerness to en*o& the boundless )reedom )rom the realit&. 8e gathered in this poem a wealth o) s&mbolism$ employed a structural art and his powers o) metrical orchestration at their best. 4ohn -eats (1/5;01'"1! 4Ode on an Grecian Urn5 shows the contrast between the permanence o) art and transience o) human passion. The poet has absorbed himsel) into the timeless beauti)ul scener& on the anti,ue %recian urn: the lovers$ musicians and worshippers on the urn e'ist simultaneousl& and )or ever in their intensit& o) *o&. The& are una))ected b& time$ stilled in e'pectation. This is at once the glor& and limitation o) the world con*ured up b& an ob*ect o) art. The urn celebrates but simpli)ies intuitions o) ecstas& b& seeming to den& our pain)ul +nowledge o) transience and su))ering. .ut in the last stan(a$ the urn becomes a 40old Pastoral$5 which presents his ambivalence about time and the nature o) beaut&. The odes are generall& regarded as 2eats- most important and mature world. Their sub*ect matter$ however$ is the poet-s abiding preoccupation with the imagination as it reaches out to

union with the beauti)ul. "n the greatest o) these wor+s$ he also suggests the undercurrent o) disillusion that accompanies such ecstas&$ the human su))ering which )orever ,uestions visionar& transcendence achieved b& art. 2eats-s poetr& is alwa&s sensuous$ color)ul and rich in imager&$ which e'presses the acuteness o) his senses. 1ight$ sound$ scent$ taste and )eeling are all ta+en in to give an entire understanding o) an e'perience. 8e has the power o) entering the )eelings o) others777either human or animal. 8e declared once that when he saw a bird on the lawn$ he entered imaginativel& into the li)e o) the bird. 2eats delights to dwell on beauti)ul words and phrases which sound musical. 8e draws diction$ st&le and imager& )rom wor+s o) 1ha+espeare$ #ilton and Eante. /ith vivid and rich images$ he paints poetic pictures )ull o) wonder)ul color. Selected Reading 8de on a .recian +rn This ode was written in #a&$ 1819$ almost at the same time as Ode to a Nightingale. 8ere the poet gave his commentar& on a %ree+ vase which$ as a relic o) ancient culture$ caught his imagination. :n the sur)ace o) the vase there was an ornamental band o) sculpture with )igures o) trees$ pipes and lovers on it. Though the& were ,uiet )orms$ the& possessed the beaut&$ the signi)icance and the eternit& o) art which appealed to 2eats. 1o at the end o) the poem$ the poet emphasi(ed the relationship between beaut& and truth: 4.eaut& is truth$ truth beaut&5$ thus declaring his worship o) beaut&$ especiall& in the )ield o) art. 4ane *#sten (1//;01'1/! 8er wor+s: 1ense and 1ensibilit&3 Pride and Pre*udice3 !mma3 6orthanger @bbe&3 #ans)ield Par+3 Persuasion %enerall& spea+ing$ ?ane @usten was a writer o) 18 th7centur&$ though she lived mainl& in the 19 th centur&. 1he holds the ideals o) the landlord class in politics$ religion and moral principles3 and her wor+s show clearl& her )irm belie) in the predominance o) reason over passion$ the sense o) responsibilit&$ good manners and clear7sighted *udgment over the Romantic tendencies o) emotion and individualit&. @s a realistic writer$ she considers it her dut& to e'press in her wor+s a discriminated and serious criticism o) li)e$ and to e'pose the )ollies and illusions o) man+ind. 1he shows contemptuous )eelings towards snobber&$ stupidit&$ worldliness and vulgarit& through subtle satire and iron&. @nd in st&le$ she is a neoclassicism advocator$ upholding those traditional ideas o) order$ reason$ proportion and grace)ulness in novel writing. @usten-s main literar& concern is about human beings in their personal relationships. .ecause o) this$ her novels have a universal signi)icance. "t is her conviction that a man-s relationship to his wi)e and children is at least as at least as important a part o) his li)e as his concerns about his belie) and career. "t reveals his moral ,ualit& more accuratel& and truth)ull&. ") one wants to +now about his nature and temper$ one should see him at home. @usten shows a human being not at moments o) crisis$ but in the most trivial incidents o) ever&da& li)e. "t doesn-t mean that this is less )undamental in the stud& o) human nature and li)e. or li)e is made up o) small things$ and human nature reveals itsel) in them as )ull& as in big ones. @ picnic in the woods shows up sel)ishness$ +indness$ vanit& or sincerit& *ust as much as a )ight in a battle)ield. @s a novelist ?ane @usten writes within a ver& narrow sphere. The sub*ect matter$ the character range$ the social setting$ and plots are all restricted to the provincial li)e o) the late 18 th7centur&

!ngland$ concerning three or )our landed gentr& )amilies with their dail& routine li)e: relationships with members o) their own )amil& and with their )riends$ dancing parties$ tea parties$ picnics$ and gossips. "n her novels$ there is little re)lection on the events that stirred the whole !urope at the time$ no thrilling adventures$ no abstract ideas$ no romantic reveries$ and even no death scenes. !ver&thing in her novel results in an observation o) a ,uiet$ unevent)ul and contented li)e o) the !nglish countr&. 8ere lie her ver& wea+ points as well as strong points. 1uch narrowness apparentl& comes )rom the writer-s own limits o) her +nowledge$ it allows the writer to have a close stud& o) characters and a detailed description o) recurring situations so that she can portra& them with absolute accurac& and sureness. "t is no e'aggeration to sa& that within her limited sphere$ ?ane @usten is une,ualed. The wor+s o) ?ane @usten$ at once delight)ul and pro)ound$ are among the supreme achievements o) !nglish literature. /ith trenchant observation and in meticulous detail$ she presents the ,uiet$ da&7to7da& countr& li)e o) the upper7middle7class !nglish. 8er characteristic theme is that maturit& is achieved through the loss o) illusions. aults o) character displa&ed b& the people o) her novels are corrected when$ through tribulation$ lessons are learned. !ven the most minor character vividl& particulari(ed in @usten-s lucid st&le. @ll these show a mind o) the shrewdest intelligence adapting the available traditions and deepening the resources o) art with consummate dra)tsmanship. .ecause o) her sensitivit& to universal patterns o) human behavior$ ?ane @usten has brought the !nglish novel$ as an art o) )orm$ to its maturit&. @nd she has been regarded b& man& critics as one o) the greatest o) all novelists. Selected reading: Pride and Pre<#dice