Content[ edit ] Wordsworth and Coleridge set out to overturn what they considered the priggish, learned, and highly sculpted forms of 18th-century English poetry and to make poetry accessible to the average person via verse written in common, everyday language. They emphasize the vitality of the living voice used by the poor to express their reality.
The topics covered include the following: The Principal object of the poems. He sees his poetry, in its concerns with the lives of men such as Michael, as an antidote to the artificial portraits of Man presented in eighteenth-century poetry. For Wordsworth and Coleridge this choice of subject matter necessarily involves a rethinking of the Language of poetry.
This leads Wordsworth to an attempt to define poetry and its effects on the reader.
This quotation illustrates how important this benevolent effect is for the reader. Inevitably, perhaps, the above leads Wordsworth towards asking What is a Poet? His answer illustrates the underlying assumptions about the poet as the genius, as the special person, capable of re-articulating thought and feeling so as to educate the reader.
Glossary Object The principle object, then proposed in these poems was to choose incidents and situations from common life, and to relate and describe them, throughout, as far as possible in a selection of language really used by men, andat the same time, to throw over them a certain colouring of imagination, whereby ordinary things should be presented to the mind in an usual aspect; and, further, and above all, to make these situations and incidents interesting by tracing in them, truly though not ostentatiously, the primary laws of our nature: Humble and rustic life Humble and rustic life was generally chosen, because in that condition, the essential passions of the heart find a better soil in which they can attain their maturity, are less under restraint, and speak a plainer and more emphatic language; because in that condition of life, our elementary feelings co-exist in a state of greater simplicity, and consequently, may be more accurately contemplated, and more forcibly communicated; because the manners of rural life germinate from these elementary feelings, and, from the necessary character of rural occupations, are more easily comprehended, and are more durable; and lastly, because in that condition the passions of men are incorporated with the beautiful and permanent forms of nature.
Language The language, too, of these men has been adopted purified indeed from what appear to be its real defects, from all lasting and rational causes of dislike and disgust because such men hourly communicate with the best objects from which with the best part of language is originally derived; and because, from their rank in society and the sameness and narrow circle of their intercourse, being less under the influence of social variety, they convey their feelings and notions in simple and unelaborated expressions.
Accordingly, such a language, arising out of the repeated experience and regular feelings is a more permanent, and a far more philosophical language, than that which is frequently substituted for it by Poets, who think that they are conferring honor upon themselves and their art, in proportion as they separate themselves from the sympathies of men, and indulge in arbitrary and capricious habits of expression, in order to furnish food for fickle appetites, of their own creation.
Definition of poetry For all good poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feeling: For our continued influxes of feeling are modified and directed by our thoughts, which are indeed the representative of all our past feelings; and, as by contemplating the relation of these general representatives to each other, we discover what is really important to men, so by the repetition and continuance of this act, our feelings will be connected with important subjects, till at length, if we be originally possessed of such sensibility, such habits of mind will be produced, that by obeying blindly and mechanically the impulses of these habits, we shall describe objects, and utter sentiments of such a nature, and in such connection with each other, that the understanding of the Reader must necessarily be in some degree enlightened, and his affections strengthened and purified.
What is a Poet?
He is a man speaking to men: To these qualities he has added a disposition to be affected more than other men by absent things as if they were present; an ability of conjuring up in himself passions, which are indeed far from being those produced by real events yet especially in those parts of the general sympathy which are pleasing and delightful do more nearly remember the passions produced by real events, than anything which, from the motions of their own minds merely, other men are accustomed to feel in themselves:Preface to Lyrical Ballads.
William Wordsworth ().
Famous Prefaces. The Harvard Classics Preface to Lyrical Ballads: William Wordsworth () THE FIRST volume of these Poems has already been submitted to general perusal. It was published, as an experiment, which, I hoped, might be of some use to ascertain, how far, by fitting.
Lyrical Ballads, with a Few Other piece of poetry is a collection of poems by William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, first published in and generally considered to have marked the beginning of the English Romantic movement in literature.
Preface to the Lyrical Ballads, written by William Wordsworth, is a landmark essay in the history of English Literature. Considered to be the Romantic Manifesto Read this article to know about Wordsworth Preface to Lyrical Ballads Main Points, preface to lyrical ballads pdf, preface to lyrical ballads summary pdf.
His Preface to the Lyrical Ballads became the symbol and the instrument of romantic revolt. Wordsworth's philosophy of life, his theory of poetry, and his political credo were all intricately connected.
In his ‘Preface’ to the edition of the Lyrical Ballads, Wordsworth presented his poetic manifesto, indicating the extent to which he saw his poetry, and that of Coleridge, as breaking away from the ‘artificiality’, ‘triviality’ or over-elaborate and contrived quality of eighteenth-century poetry.
Notes by Wordsworth to Preface to Lyrical Ballads Advertisement to Lyrical Ballads () It is the honourable characteristic of Poetry that its materials are to .