The theme of this essay is: Worship and Nature in Romanticism; we have analysed five important authors of this period, such as: Blake, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelley, Byron and Keats.
We have written down of their most important poems linked to this theme and stressed the most relevant features, for instance, in Blake’s poems we can notice his use of pictures that complete written words and contribute to the complexity of his works; moreover, his conviction that only through imagination man can reach knowledge; as far as worship and nature concerns, god is understood as the creator of the universe, one being in whom good an evil converge. Whereas Nature is a representation of the fact of human fall, “He thought Nature was part of the earthly world, he was aware of her beauty and harmony”.
As regards Wordsworth in relation to his poem “Lines written in early spring”, the most important features are: thinking of Nature itself in terms of the sublime and beautiful associated to his parents, the relationship between Nature and his childhood, acknowledging the powerfulness of imagination and the subjectivity and freedom of the poetize creation; in addition to this, to Wordsworth: “Nature codifies the social apparatus while it appears to dismantle it”.
Coleridge has been analysed in comparison with Wordswoth and analysing his poem “Frost at Midnight”, for instance, the effect of nature on the imagination, the relationship between children and the natural world, the contrast between this liberating country setting and city, and the relationship between adulthood and childhood.
The Shelley’s poem is “Queen Mab”; the poem is an ode to Nature and he talks about Nature as it was God, he loves Nature, in his opinion human beings cannot control Nature but they depend on it; The last two poets are: Byron and Keats; Byron reflects his opinion about Nature and worship in his poems: “English Bards and Scotch Reviewers” and “She Walks in Beauty”, whereas as far as Keats concerns, the poem choosen are two fragments: “A fragment of Ode to a Nightingale” and “A fragment of To Autumn”; Keats declares that any contact with nature defines the happiness thought the nature itself, and in the two poems the author compares the eternal and transcendental nature with the physical world.
(By Annalisa Garofalo)
William Blake was a poet and an engraver. These two occupations were closely connected. In his works he expresses his ideas through his poems and enriches the images they evoke, it could be almost said that he completes the concepts contained in his verses with his illustrations, which are ideas captured by symbols. His illustrations are printed by him by the method of etching and he paints them as well. These pictures are verses in themselves, expressions that complete written words and that contribute complexity to the poems they illustrate.
Blake was a visionary. It was his conviction that only through imagination man can reach knowledge. And, through it, man can overcome his limited five senses which hinder an approach to man’s awareness of his own fall. As he once said:
"The imagination is not a State: it is the Human existence itself."(Blake dixit, Wikipedia)
Blake was a man in his incessant search of God. A god understood as the creator of the universe, one being in whom good an evil converge.
For Blake, Nature is a representation of the fact of human fall. For him, to be in Nature is to be isolated from the world of imagination, the world that, through exceptional and enlightening visions, approaches humankind to knowledge and to their awareness of their own existence.
And although he thought Nature was part of the earthly world, he was aware of her beauty and harmony, and that it is through Nature that man can reach the awareness of his place in the universe, in the Creation.
Blake does not feel love or worship of Nature. For him, she was part of the material world, a way to express his ideas. Ideas derived from his imagination and abstraction.
He uses Nature to frame his verses, the scenes and images these evoke, and to create a symbology which allows him to communicate his thoughts, ideas and wishes.
Through Nature Blake shows us the most inner part of man, man’s inner self is represented by Nature facts, becoming these facts symbols of Blake’s ideas. He believes in the ability to apprehend not in the being itself. Therefore, he does not give value to what exists, and therefore neither he does to Nature, to reality.
(cf. http://www.multimedialibrary.com/Articles/kazin/alfredblake.asp. )
He is aware that reality is just how one understands it. Just how one himself processes in his inner self through his imagination and his perception.
Then it can be said that Blake’s affection for Nature comes from her usefulness to represent real existence and being of man, his ideas and his knowledge, reached through his imagination.
down the valleys wild
Piping songs of pleasant glee
On a cloud I saw a child.
And he laughing said to me.
Pipe a song about a Lamb;
So I piped with merry chear,
Piper pipe that song again —
So I piped, he wept to hear.
Drop thy pipe thy happy pipe
Sing thy songs of happy chear,
So I sung the same again
While he wept with joy to hear
Piper sit thee down and write
In a book that all may read —
So he vanish'd from my sight.
And I pluck'd a hollow reed.
And I made a rural pen, And I stain'd the water clear, And I wrote my happy songs, Every child may joy to hear
(Introduction from Songs of Innocence and of Experience)
Milton saw Albion upon the
Rock of Ages,
Deadly pale outstretchd and snowy cold, storm coverd;
A Giant form of perfect beauty outstretchd on the rock
In solemn death: the Sea of Time & Space thunderd aloud
Against the rock, which was inwrapped with the weeds of death
Hovering over the cold bosom, in its vortex Milton bent down
To the bosom of death, what was underneath soon seemd above.
A cloudy heaven mingled with stormy seas in loudest ruin;
But as a wintry globe descends precipitant thro' Beulah bursting,
With thunders loud, and terrible: so
Precipitant loud thundring into the Sea of Time & Space.
Then first I saw him in the Zenith as a falling star,
Descending perpendicular, swift as the swallow or swift;
And on my left foot falling on the tarsus, enterd there;
But from my left foot a black cloud redounding spread over
By him on earth in his bright pilgrimage of sixty years
(From Milton 1804, Plate 15, 37-53)
William Blake (1757-1827)
Romantic Natural History© by Ashton Nichols, 2000, 2006
Wikipedia. The Free encyclopaedia. Article on William Blake.
Introduction from Songs of Innocence and of Experience
These websites were used the last week of October 2006.
First of all I
would like to say that “Nature” has taken an important role in poetry of
different periods of literature and countries. Nature is present not only in
English literature but also in French and Spanish poets such as Garcilaso de
Secondly, I am going to enumerate some characteristics that have something to do with the romantic’s vision of nature and Wordsworth own perception.
Romanticism is a general, collective term to describe much of the art and literature produced during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
be seen as a revolution in the arts, alongside the political, social and
industrial revolutions of the age: all spheres of human activity were
undergoing great change. Wordsworth and Coleridge were among the first British
poets to explore the new theories and ideas that were sweeping through
1- An emphasis on the emotions (a fashionable word at the beginning of the period was ‘sensibility’. This meant having, or cultivating, a sensitive, emotional and intuitive way of understanding the world)
2- Exploring the relationship between nature and human life
3- A stress on the importance of personal experiences and a desire to understand what influences the human mind
4- A belief in the power of the imagination
5- An interest in mythological, fantastical, gothic and supernatural themes
6- An emphasis on the sublime (this word was used to describe a spiritual awareness, which could be stimulated by a grand and awesome landscape)
7- Social and political idealism.
We can say that “nature” is always present (sometimes meaning something different depending on the poem) in Wordsworth poetry and it is the main theme in most of his poems. Furthermore, I would like to say what this poet thought about this topic.
William Wordsworth is the Romantic poet most often described as a "nature" writer; what the word "nature" meant to Wordsworth is, however, a complex issue. On the one hand, Wordsworth was the quintessential poet as naturalist, always paying close attention to details of the physical environment around him (plants, animals, geography, weather). At the same time, Wordsworth was a self-consciously literary artist who described "the mind of man" as the "main haunt and region of [his] song." This tension between objective describer of the natural scene and subjective shaper of sensory experience is partly the result of Wordsworth's view of the mind as "creator and receiver both." Such an alliance of the inner life with the outer world is at the heart of Wordsworth's descriptions of nature.
Here, that deep blue sea or that river, show us that water which is apparently calm, can change into huge strength waves and that would produce some inspiration in the poet that would change his feelings.
I have written all these examples because I think that it is interesting to see how Wordsworth saw nature in some of his poems as we can say that nature is his main topic and this theme takes a very important role in all his works. However, I would like to focus my attention on the poem called “Lines written in early spring”, also written by Wordsworth, where we can find a lot of examples of nature. It mainly talks about this topic.
In this poem, Wordsworth contrasts the perceived happiness and pleasure of the natural world with the grim state of mankind. He introduces this theme with the last two lines of the first stanza: "In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts bring sad thoughts to the mind."
Wordsworth then suggests that the happiness of nature should be paralelled by a hapiness of mankind: "To her fair works did nature link the human soul that through me ran; and much it greaves my heart to think what man has made of man."
This poem is mainly talking about nature in a very positive way. It really recreates a spring atmosphere because he says “and ‘tis my faith that every flower”(line 11) or “the birds around me hopp’d and play’d”(line 13). What he is describing in this examples is very much related with that season( the spring).
It makes you feel very calm and relaxed because he describes that season with harmonious adjectives and tenderness. We can also see that calm in lines 17, 18, 19 and 20) where he says “the budding twigs spread out their fan, to catch the breezy air, and I must think, do all I can, that there was pleasure there”. Here he also recreates that feeling of breathing pure air, because it has always been said that when you are close to nature, the air is not polluted so it is more pure and there are not difficulties for breathing. So, here he is saying that he was lying in a tree seeing the lovely nature and breathing that pure air that nature brings him.
I think that in this poem, nature has a very important role and, although for Wordsworth, nature had different meanings depending on the poem he is talking about, in this one we can easily see that nature is here described as that sensation of calm, of being in harmony and seeing birds playing or leaves flourishing and breathing. So, we must say that this poem is a very good example of Wordsworth view of nature.
Like the other romantics, Coleridge worshiped nature and recognized poetry’s capacity to describe the beauty of the natural world. His most famous works – The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Kubla Khan and Christabel – all took supernatural themes and presented exotic images, perhaps affected by his use of the drugs. In great part of Coleridge’s poems is expressed the concept of nature. Wordsworth and Coleridge are the romantic poets who have mostly used the concept of nature in their poems.
The Eolian Harp, use images of nature to explore philosophical and analytical ideas. Still other poems, including The Nightingale, simply praise nature’s beauty. Even poems that don’t directly deal with nature, including Kubla Khan and The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, contain some symbols and images from nature.
Coleridge through his experience with nature becomes almost completely human. Wordsworth and Coleridge realize that no matter how strong the poet's connection with nature, he is still separate from it.
The two men revere nature and know they are essential to its beauty, because they must appreciate it for the beauty to exist. However, they are still separate from it; they are human. These two poets use a technique that departs completely from the neoclassical tradition where the emphasis was placed on order and balance and reasoned thoughts, even in form. Coleridge and Wordsworth take the liberty to write in blank verse, often without punctuation between lines, underlining the Romantic ideal of emotion.
Further, Coleridge's poems complicate the phenomena Wordsworth takes for granted: the simple unity between the child and nature and the adult's reconnection with nature through memories of childhood; in poems such as Frost at Midnight, Coleridge indicates the fragility of the child's innocence by relating his own urban childhood. In poems such as Dejection: An Ode and Nightingale, he stresses the division between his own mind and the beauty of the natural world. Finally, Coleridge often privileges unusual tales and strange imagery over the commonplace, rural simplicities Wordsworth advocates; the "thousand slimy things" that crawl upon the rotting sea in the "Rime" would be out of place in a Wordsworth poem. . The mind, to Coleridge, cannot take its feeling from nature and cannot falsely fill nature with its own feeling; rather, the mind must be so covered with its own joy that it opens up to the real, independent, "immortal" joy of nature.
Frost performs its secret ministry,
Unhelped by any wind. The owlet's cry
Came loud--and hark, again ! loud as before.
The inmates of my cottage, all at rest,
Have left me to that solitude, which suits
Abstruser musings : save that at my side
My cradled infant slumbers peacefully.
'Tis calm indeed ! so calm, that it disturbs
And vexes meditation with its strange
And extreme silentness. Sea, hill, and wood,
This populous village ! Sea, and hill, and wood,
With all the numberless goings-on of life,
Inaudible as dreams ! the thin blue flame
Lies on my low-burnt fire, and quivers not;
Only that film, which fluttered on the grate,
Still flutters there, the sole unquiet thing.
Methinks, its motion in this hush of nature
Gives it dim sympathies with me who live,
Making it a companionable form,
Whose puny flaps and freaks the idling Spirit
By its own moods interprets, every where
Echo or mirror seeking of itself,
And makes a toy of Thought.
O! how oft,
How oft, at school, with most believing mind,
Presageful, have I gazed upon the bars,
To watch that fluttering stranger ! and as oft
With unclosed lids, already had I dreamt
Of my sweet birth-place, and the old church-tower,
Whose bells, the poor man's only music, rang
From morn to evening, all the hot Fair-day,
So sweetly, that they stirred and haunted me
With a wild pleasure, falling on mine ear
Most like articulate sounds of things to come!
So gazed I, till the soothing things, I dreamt,
Lulled me to sleep, and sleep prolonged my dreams!
And so I brooded all the following morn,
Awed by the stern preceptor's face, mine eye
Fixed with mock study on my swimming book:
Save if the door half opened, and I snatched
A hasty glance, and still my heart leaped up,
For still I hoped to see the stranger's face,
Townsman, or aunt, or sister more beloved,
My play-mate when we both were clothed alike!
Babe, that sleepest cradled by my side,
Whose gentle breathings, heard in this deep calm,
Fill up the intersperséd vacancies
And momentary pauses of the thought!
My babe so beautiful ! it thrills my heart
With tender gladness, thus to look at thee,
And think that thou shalt learn far other lore,
And in far other scenes ! For I was reared
In the great city, pent 'mid cloisters dim,
And saw nought lovely but the sky and stars.
But thou, my babe ! shalt wander like a breeze
By lakes and sandy shores, beneath the crags
Of ancient mountain, and beneath the clouds,
Which image in their bulk both lakes and shores
And mountain crags : so shalt thou see and hear
The lovely shapes and sounds intelligible
Of that eternal language, which thy God
Utters, who from eternity doth teach
Himself in all, and all things in himself.
Great universal Teacher ! he shall mould
Thy spirit, and by giving make it ask.
all seasons shall be sweet to thee,
Whether the summer clothe the general earth
With greenness, or the redbreast sit and sing
Betwixt the tufts of snow on the bare branch
Of mossy apple-tree, while the nigh thatch
Smokes in the sun-thaw ; whether the eave-drops fall
Heard only in the trances of the blast,
Or if the secret ministry of frost
Shall hang them up in silent icicles,
Quietly shining to the quiet Moon.
The effect of nature on the imagination (nature is the Teacher that "by giving" to the child's spirit also makes it "ask"); the relationship between children and the natural world ("thou, my babe! shall wander like a breeze..."); the contrast between this liberating country setting and city ("I was reared / In the great city, pent 'mid cloisters dim"); and the relationship between adulthood and childhood as they are linked in adult memory.
However, while the poem conforms to many of the guiding principles of Romanticism, it also highlights a key difference between Coleridge and his fellow Romantics, specifically Wordsworth. Wordsworth, raised in the rustic countryside, saw his own childhood as a time when his connection with the natural world was at its greatest; he revisited his memories of childhood in order to calm his feelings and provoke his imagination. Coleridge, on the other hand, was raised in London, "pent 'mid cloisters dim," and questions Wordsworth's easy identification of childhood with a kind of automatic, original happiness; instead, in this poem he says that, as a child, he "saw naught lovely but the stars and sky" and seems to feel the effects of that separation. In this poem, we see how the pain of this unfriendliness has strengthened Coleridge's wish that his child enjoy an idyllic Wordsworthian upbringing "by lakes and sandy shores, beneath the crags / Of ancient mountain, and beneath the clouds..." Rather than seeing the link between childhood and nature as an inevitable, Coleridge seems to perceive it as a fragile, precious, and extraordinary connection, one of which he himself was deprived.
In expressing its central themes, Frost at Midnight relies on a highly personal idiom whereby the reader follows the natural progression of the speaker's mind as he sits up late one winter night thinking. His idle observation gives the reader a quick impression of the scene, from the "silent ministry" of the frost to the cry of the owl and the sleeping child. Coleridge uses language that indicates the immediacy of the scene to draw in the reader; for instance, the speaker cries "Hark!" upon hearing the owl, as though he were surprised by its call. The objects surrounding the speaker become metaphors for the work of the mind and the imagination, so that the fluttering film on the fire grate plunges him into the recollection of his childhood. His memory of feeling trapped in the schoolhouse naturally brings him back into his immediate surroundings with a surge of love and sympathy for his son. His final meditation on his son's future becomes mingled with his Romantic interpretation of nature and its role in the child's imagination, and his consideration of the objects of nature brings him back to the frost and the icicles, which, forming and shining in silence, mirror the silent way in which the world works upon the mind; this revisitation of winter's frosty forms brings the poem full circle.
Shelley was one of the major English Romantic poets and he is widely considered to be among the finest lyric poets of the English language. He is perhaps more famous for such anthology pieces as “Ozymandias”, “Ode to the West Wind”, “To a Skylark” and “The Masque of Anarchy”. However, his major works were long visionary poems. And as his contemporaries did, the poems that he produced were dealing with: nature, to see the artist as a creator, to believe in the goodness of human being and to be against rationalism and exaltate the feelings. Above all, it was the effects of the French Revolution; furthermore Shelley was influenced by Keats’ death too. (<http://rpo.library.utoronto.ca/poem/1879.html> from Amazon.com).
But now, we are going to talk about an other of his poems, “Queen Mab”, which was written in 1812 and it was published in 1813 celebrating the atheism, free love, vegetarianism and republicanism. As “Queen Mab” is one of the Romantic poets’ works that deals with the topic of the love and worship of nature in Romanticism, therefore we can use it as an example for our paper. (<http://www.bartelby.com/65/ro/romantic.html> from Amazon.com).
We can see that the poem is an ode to Nature because the poet, Shelley, talks about Nature as if it was God. He treats it as an <<universal spirit>> that is in all places like God, and as an <<eternal universe>> that never can die because Nature is the mother of all: <<thou mother of the world!>>, it creates and destroys what it wants; therefore, the poem is a worship of Nature because the poet loves Nature. Furthermore, a lot of words that deal with Nature appear in “Queen Mab” as: earth (the world when all human beings live); tempest, lightnings and storm dealing with the weather (which sometimes we are afraid of it because it can destroy and kill us); and groves, clouds, rock, sunbeams... There is a feeling of darkness and death <<on the darkness of our prison>> that contrasts with the feeling of brightness and life <<the lamp of earthly life>> that deals with Nature <<eternal spring of life and death, of happyness and woe>>; <<where pain and pleasure, good and evil join>>. Human beings cannot control Nature but we depend on it; without water there is no life and then we die and Nature seizes of our bodies and souls. Then we build graves to keep our bodies and temples or altars to protect and keep our souls, as we do in churches when somebody dies, we pray for the salvation of his/her soul. But in the poem Shelley says Nature does not need we pray for it <<no prayers or praises>> as we do with God, but as the poem is a worship, then it is a contradiction. (From the poem).
The poem itself is divided into different parts. Firstly, the three first lines are an introduction where Shelley introduces to the reader “Queen Mab”, but Who is Queen Mab? It is the spirit of activity and decay: <<A Spirit of activity and light>>, with <<no cessation>>, with <<no term>>, no condition, it has not to follow any rules, and it has not to die because it/she (Queen Mab) is a spirit.
Secondly, in the following large sentence the poet is describing to us which is the power that Nature has, a power that can <<strengthens in healthy, and poisons in disease>>, <<The strom of change>> changes are storms, and we are surrounded by natural influence (of the moon, weather “storms”).
Thirdly, the next sentence is a worship of Nature: <<The universal spirit>>, <<soul of the Universe! Eternal spring of life and death, of happiness and woe>> and a comparison between God and Nature, because we can feel the Nature’s and God’s spirits but we cannot see them: <<We feel, but cannot see>>. Thee is incredibility of the Christian religion and Shelley says in the poem “There is no God”, but God sends the storm and everything happens because of God will. For human beings God became a man with human qualities and he governs the universe as a monarch governs his kingdom and people address to him as those of subjects to a king; we acknowledge his benevolence, deprecate his anger and supplicate his favour. But without some insight into its will respecting our actions religion is vain. Then, here, “There is no God” in the poem, and because of it maybe Shelley put “Queen Mab” as the title of his poem.
Fourthly, and related to the previous one, the poet is showing us that because of all the power that Nature has: <<thou mother of the world>> he has to pray for Nature. Furthermore, we can see, by reading between lines, that to pray for Nature is better than to pray for God because Nature is pure and it is not guilty of anything because it has not rationality as human beings have: <<Because thou hast not human sense, because thou art not human mind>>. But Shelley tells us we do not need to pray for Nature: <<thou requir’st no prayers or praises>> because Nature has <<no love, no hate thou cherishest; revenge and favouritism, and worst desire of fame thou know’st not>>, Nature treats us equally: <<with an impartial eye>>.
Finally, Shelley shows us we can see Nature as a God because it is <<unchangeable>> and time cannot destroy its <<universal spirit>>, it is a Nature <<where pain and pleasure, good and evil join, to do the will of strong necessity, and life, in multitudinous shapes>>. (From the poem itself).
In conclusion, this poem is one of the examples that the Romantic poets write with the topic of the love and worship of nature in Romanticism, dealing with a universal love to Nature because she is the mother of all human beings and of all life that stays in the Earth, and a worship of Nature because of it too, comparing Nature with God and treating her (Nature, the spirit) as a queen.
these infinite orbs of mingling light,
Of which yon earth is one, is wide diffus'd
A Spirit of activity and life,
That knows no term, cessation, or decay;
That fades not when the lamp of earthly life, 150
Extinguish'd in the dampness of the grave,
Awhile there slumbers, more than when the babe
In the dim newness of its being feels
The impulses of sublunary things,
And all is wonder to unpractis'd sense:
But, active, steadfast and eternal, still
Guides the fierce whirlwind, in the tempest roars,
Cheers in the day, breathes in the balmy groves,
Strengthens in health, and poisons in disease;
And in the storm of change, that ceaselessly 160
Rolls round the eternal universe and shakes
Its undecaying battlement, presides,
Apportioning with irresistible law
The place each spring of its machine shall fill;
So that when waves on waves tumultuous heap
Confusion to the clouds, and fiercely driven
Heaven's lightnings scorch the uprooted ocean-fords,
Whilst, to the eye of shipwreck'd mariner,
Lone sitting on the bare and shuddering rock,
All seems unlink'd contingency and chance, 170
No atom of this turbulence fulfils
A vague and unnecessitated task,
Or acts but as it must and ought to act.
Even the minutest molecule of light,
That in an April sunbeam's fleeting glow
Fulfils its destin'd, though invisible work,
The universal Spirit guides; nor less,
When merciless ambition, or mad zeal,
Has led two hosts of dupes to battlefield,
That, blind, they there may dig each other's graves, 180
And call the sad work glory, does it rule
All passions: not a thought, a will, an act,
No working of the tyrant's moody mind,
Nor one misgiving of the slaves who boast
Their servitude to hide the shame they feel,
Nor the events enchaining every will,
That from the depths of unrecorded time
Have drawn all-influencing virtue, pass
Unrecogniz'd or unforeseen by thee,
Soul of the Universe! eternal spring 190
Of life and death, of happiness and woe,
Of all that chequers the phantasmal scene
That floats before our eyes in wavering light,
Which gleams but on the darkness of our prison,
Whose chains and massy walls
We feel, but cannot see.
"Spirit of Nature!
Necessity! thou mother of the world!
Unlike the God of human error, thou
Requir'st no prayers or praises; the caprice 200
Of man's weak will belongs no more to thee
Than do the changeful passions of his breast
To thy unvarying harmony: the slave,
Whose horrible lusts spread misery o'er the world,
And the good man, who lifts with virtuous pride
His being in the sight of happiness
That springs from his own works; the poison-tree,
Beneath whose shade all life is wither'd up,
And the fair oak, whose leafy dome affords
A temple where the vows of happy love 210
Are register'd, are equal in thy sight:
No love, no hate thou cherishest; revenge
And favouritism, and worst desire of fame
Thou know'st not: all that the wide world contains
Are but thy passive instruments, and thou
Regard'st them all with an impartial eye,
Whose joy or pain thy nature cannot feel,
Because thou hast not human sense,
Because thou art not human mind.
when the sweeping storm of time 220
Has sung its death-dirge o'er the ruin'd fanes
And broken altars of the almighty Fiend
Whose name usurps thy honours, and the blood
Through centuries clotted there has floated down
The tainted flood of ages, shalt thou live
Unchangeable! A shrine is rais'd to thee,
Which, nor the tempest-breath of time,
Nor the interminable flood
Over earth's slight pageant rolling,
Availeth to destroy-- 230
The sensitive extension of the world.
That wondrous and eternal fane,
Where pain and pleasure, good and evil join,
To do the will of strong necessity,
And life, in multitudinous shapes,
Still pressing forward where no term can be,
Like hungry and unresting flame
Curls round the eternal columns of its strength."
Among these romantic poets, it‘s important to highlight Lord Byron who was an elegant, exciting figure. A man of monstrous appetites and ambitions, his insouciance and supreme self-confidence are reflected in his agile turns of phrase and his audacious, almost cheeky rhymes.
He obtained a reputation as being unconventional, eccentric, flamboyant and contentious. Byron had a great fondness for animals, it is known that he had lots of dogs, the most famous Boatswain; it has a inscription that has become one of his best-known works, Epitaph to a dog.
Keats is an author that belongs to the same poetic group as P. Shelley. He wrote his first book in 1817, a group of poems; the second one is an adaptation of a Greek myth and the Moon God, to express the search of the ideal love. In 1820 published his third book, about some mythical topics in Old Age, Medieval time and Renaissance. In this book appears the poem with the title “The Autumn”, a fantastic lyric work. Also this poem, there are some Odes about nature, a typical theme in Romantic time.
“'To Autumn' is perhaps Keats's most famous and beloved work. It is considered the perfect embodiment of poetic form, intent, and effect. It was written in Winchester on 19 September 1819 and first published in 1820 Keats described the feeling behind its composition in a letter to his friend Reynolds, 'Somehow a stubble plain looks”.
Such poems as “Ode to a Nightingale,” “Ode on a Grecian Urn,” “To Autumn,” and “Ode on Melancholy” are unequalled for dignity, melody, and richness of sensuous imagery. All of his poetry is filled with a mysterious and elevating sense of beauty and joy.
of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.
As we can observe, “To Autumn” shows the enormous importance that have the contact with the nature. Keats defines autumn as the opportunity to be happy, that is, that any contact with nature defines the happiness thought the nature itself and not by concrete situations or the feelings that this season would provoke.
In the second book we can find this Ode that we have above, but this are inside one of the better works that have his author, Hyperion; also this contain works as the lyric poem “To Autumn” and the three Odes, Ode to a Nightingale is one of these. In these three the author is compared the eternal and transcendental nature with the physical world.
Imagination, emotion, and freedom are certainly the main points of romanticism. The main characteristics of the poetry of romanticism includes subjectivity and an emphasis on individualism; spontaneity; freedom; solitude; the beliefs that imagination is superior to reason and devotion to beauty; love and worship of nature; and fascination with the past, especially the myths and mysticism of the middle ages.
As we have said at the beginning of our work, the main poets of this movement were William Blake, William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Lord Byron, and John Keats and we have given a general view of the nature on his poetry. I have to say that the life of imagination was more real to them than the material world. Although these authors didn’t have the same views on nature, they had in common their fear towards the powers of nature and the earth, no matter if these powers create or destroy life.
In order to sum up, I would like to mention that the romantic poetry means for the people at that time a definite shift in sensibility and feeling, particularly in relation to the natural order and Nature.