By Tim Fulford
Tim Fulford examines panorama description within the writings of Thomson, Cowper, Johnson, Gilpin, Repton, Wordsworth, Coleridge and others. He exhibits how panorama description shaped a part of a bigger debate over the character of liberty and authority in a Britain constructing its experience of nationhood, and divulges the tensions that arose as writers sought to outline their dating to the general public sphere. Fulford's leading edge examine deals a brand new view of literary and political impression linking the early eighteenth and 19th centuries.
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Tim Fulford examines panorama description within the writings of Thomson, Cowper, Johnson, Gilpin, Repton, Wordsworth, Coleridge and others. He indicates how panorama description shaped a part of a bigger debate over the character of liberty and authority in a Britain constructing its feel of nationhood, and divulges the tensions that arose as writers sought to outline their courting to the general public sphere.
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Extra resources for Landscape, Liberty and Authority: Poetry, Criticism and Politics from Thomson to Wordsworth
305). It is nature that 'enlarges, and transports, the soul' - there is no thinking of it 'without breaking out into P O E T R Y ' . Here Thomson borrows Dennis's critical language, but applies it directly to nature rather than to classical or Miltonic poetry as had Dennis himself. Poetry becomes, on this account, an outburst or transport of excited thought in direct response to landscape, which itself takes on the power to exalt the viewer into a state of high moral feeling, a power possessed by religion in the critical account Dennis had given of classical cultures.
Into his Mind', disrupting the temporal and spatial sequentiality of reading down and across the page. At the same time semantic ambiguities create a landscape of strange opposition. Does 'still' indicate temporal continuity or spatial stasis, 24 Landscape, liberty and authority an apparent contradiction of the motion implied by 'unfrozen Spring'? Likewise the phrase 'where the fresh Fountain from the Bottom boils' introduces the unexpected notion of violent heat, at odds with both the stillness and the coldness of the scene hitherto.
The Muse, Thomson declares, dedicates the forces of nature - winds and floods - to an articulation of Wilmington's sublimely patriotic political activities (his 'awful schemes' (line 30)) . Thomson's willingness to use the vocabulary of his natural sublime to flatter Whig politicians can be understood as the result of a tradition of formal compliment of patrons, expected of the poet and not necessarily judged by readers for its sincerity and veracity. Despite the existence of this tradition, Thomson, in protesting too much for his patron, threatens the apparent sincerity with which, in the poem as a whole, he dramatizes the forces of nature as morally exemplary instances of the power of God.