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The Romantics John Constable Sketch for Hadleigh Castle c.1828-9.

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Presentation on theme: "The Romantics John Constable Sketch for Hadleigh Castle c.1828-9."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Romantics John Constable Sketch for Hadleigh Castle c

2 Alexander Pope Essay on Criticism

3 Age of revolutions"--including, of course, the American (1776) and the French (1789) revolutions--an age of upheavals in political, economic, and social traditions, the age which witnessed the initial transformations of the Industrial Revolution. A revolutionary energy was also at the core of Romanticism, which quite consciously set out to transform not only the theory and practice of poetry (and all art), but the very way we perceive the world. "The Relief of the Light Brigade" by Richard Caton Woodville (1897)

4 Age of Crisis Jacques Louis David, Bonaparte Crossing the Alps, 1800

5 The imagination was elevated to a position as the supreme faculty of the mind. Discover yourself -- express yourself, cried the Romantic artist. Play your own music, write your own drama, paint your own personal vision, live, love and suffer in your own way. William Blake, Creating Adam 1805

6 The reconciliation of opposites is a central ideal for the Romantics. Finally, imagination is inextricably bound up with the other two major concepts (nature and symbolism and myth), for it is presumed to be the faculty which enables us to "read" nature as a system of symbols.

7 "Nature" meant many things to the Romantics. As suggested above, it was often presented as itself a work of art, constructed by a divine imagination, in emblematic language. Romantic nature poetry is essentially a poetry of meditation.

8 Symbolism and Myth J.W. Waterhouse 1888

9 Emotion, Lyric Poetry, and the Self Joseph Turner – Steamer in Snowstorm (1842)

10 Wordsworth's definition of all good poetry as "the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings" marks a turning point in literary history. William Turner. Light and Colour (Goethe's Theory) - The Morning after the Deluge - Moses Writing the Book of Genesis

11 The "poetic speaker" became less a persona and more the direct person of the poet Caspar David Friedrich, Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog, 1817

12 Individualism: The Romantic Hero Lord Byron

13 The Everyday… John Constable The Hay-Wain, 1821

14 …and the Exotic Chassériau, Othello and Desdemona in Venice 1850

15 Spread of the Romantic Spirit Casper David Friedrich

16 7 Romantic Characteristics Beauty of the untamed, natural world Attractiveness of the pastoral life Freedom Imagination Emotion Lack of authority Rights of the individual

17 The Bard by John Martin (1817) 1. beauty of the untamed, natural world - 2. attractiveness of the pastoral life - 3. freedom - 4. imagination - 5. emotion - 6. lack of authority - 7. rights of the individual -

18 The Bard by John Martin (1817) 1. beauty of the untamed, natural world - beauty in the rocks and the clouds 2. attractiveness of the pastoral life - bard lives off of the land 3. freedom - the bard is free to go wherever he wants, he is not confined by a path like the soldiers 4. imagination - the bard has a harp and is a poet, standing for vision and imagination 5. emotion - consider the stance of the bard 6. lack of authority - the bard answers to no one, the horses near the water are rearing up against their riders authority 7. rights of the individual - the bard is an individual

19 Abbey Under the Oak Tree by Caspar David Friedrich (1808 – 1810) the beauty of the untamed, natural world; the attractiveness of the pastoral life; freedom; imagination; emotion; lack of authority; rights of the individual

20 Robert Burns

21 William Wordsworth

22 Composed Upon Westminster Bridge 1. Briefly give an interpretation of the sonnet. 2. Give two examples of hyperbole. Explain how these are effective in the context of the poem. 3. "A sight so touching in its majesty" is an example of paradox or oxymoron. Explain why this example might be interpreted as the poem's most important image. 4. What effect on the reader does the personification of London have in line 14? 5. What is the attitude of the speaker at the close of the poem? 6. The sonnet form was not much practiced in England between Milton in the mid-seventeenth century and Wordsworth in the early nineteenth century. Which form of the sonnet has he chosen, and how does he employ the octave and sestet to convey his theme? 7. How do the first three lines keep the reader in suspense as to the subject of the poem? 8. Explain how the line beginning "This City" conveys at once a description of what is observed, and the observer's mood. 9. How is the contrast between the momentary hushed stillness of the city and its usual bustling activity implied, even though not actually stated? 10. For general discussion: how does line 8 create a sense of shimmering beauty?

23 Hyperbole Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

24 Paradox Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

25 Personification Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

26 Attitude of speaker at close? Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

27 Sonnet Form Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. (VOLTA) Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

28 Suspense Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. (VOLTA) Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

29 Description and Mood Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. (VOLTA) Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

30 How is contrast between stillness and activity implied? Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. (VOLTA) Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

31 Shimmering beauty? Earth has not anything to show more fair: Dull would he be of soul who could pass by A sight so touching in its majesty: This City now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning; silent, bare, Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie Open unto the fields, and to the sky; All bright and glittering in the smokeless air. (VOLTA) Never did the sun more beautifully steep In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill; Neer saw I, never felt, a calm so deep! The river glideth at his own sweet will: Dear God! The very houses seem asleep; And all that mighty heart is lying still! - William Wordsworth, 1802

32 William Blake

33 Samuel Taylor Coleridge

34 Portrait of Byron in Albanian dress by Thomas Phillips, 1835

35 John Keats 1795 – 1821

36 Percy Bysshe Shelley 1792–1822

37 The Land of Oz Some Observations: 1.Paradox? 2.Secondary paradox?

38 Four Observations 1.Distance 2.Reflected in modern music/lyrics 3. The Emperors Club 4. The competition…

39 "On a Stupendous Leg of Granite, Discovered Standing by Itself in the Deserts of Egypt, with the Inscription Inserted Below. In Egypts sandy silence, all alone, Stands a gigantic Leg, which far off throws The only shadow that the Desert knows. "I am great Ozymandias," saith the stone, "The King of kings: this mighty city shows The wonders of my hand." The city's gone! Naught but the leg remaining to disclose The sight of that forgotten Babylon. We wonder, and some hunter may express Wonder like ours, when through the wilderness Where London stood, holding the wolf in chase, He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess What wonderful, but unrecorded, race Once dwelt in that annihilated place. - Horace Smith

40 This is perhaps the single most revolutionary aspect of the Romantic Age: an admiration for all the potency and diversity of living nature superseded a concern for the discovery of its universal traits.


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