The Principles and Progress of English Poetry

9780217766807: The Principles and Progress of English Poetry

This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1904. Excerpt: ... Her mirth the world required; 5 She bathed it in smiles of glee. But her heart was tired, tired, And now they let her be. Her life was turning, turning, In mazes of heat and sound, 10 But for peace her heart was yearning, And now peace laps her round. Her cabin'd, ample spirit, It flutter'd and fail'd for breath. To-night it doth inherit 15 The vasty hall of death. 5. THE POETRY OF CHIVALRY Under this heading we have included several of the most delightful of modern English poems. One of them is the work of an American--the only American poem in this volume. The others are the work of Tennyson, and form a part of the wonderful series which their author has grouped together as Idylls of the King. They are all derived from early Celtic legend, and have been preserved through British tradition and English literature for more than a thousand years. The following is a very brief account of the origin and history of the legends treated in these poems. Sometime shortly before 1150 a Welsh priest, Geoffrey of Monmouth as he was called, put together in twelve short books of Latin prose what purported to be a history of the early kings of Britain (Historia Regutn Britannia). Beside the stories of King Lear and of Locrine (father of the Sabrina of Milton's Comus), this " history" entered fully into an account of the more than half-legendary " King Arthur," who is fabled to have died about 550 A.d., or six hundred years before the time of Geoffrey. Geoffrey says that he derived his stories from earlier Celtic writers; he was certainly indebted to early Celtic tradition, perhaps of Brittany as well as of Wales and Ireland. This so-called History had scarcely been written before it was turned into French verse by a certain Geoffrey Gaimar, and in this way it passed ove...

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