The Background of Gray's Elegy: A Study in the Taste for Melancholoy Poetry, 1700-1751

Front Cover
Columbia University Press, 1924 - English poetry - 270 pages
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 207 - Secure whate'er he gives, he gives the best. Yet, when the sense of sacred presence fires, And strong devotion to the skies aspires, Pour forth thy fervours for a healthful mind, Obedient passions, and a will resigned ; For love, which scarce collective man can fill ; For patience, sovereign o'er transmuted ill ; For faith, that, panting for a happier seat, Counts death kind nature's signal of retreat...
Page 7 - I know my course. The spirit that I have seen May be the devil : and the devil hath power To assume a pleasing shape; yea, and perhaps Out of my weakness and my melancholy, — As he is very potent with such spirits, — Abuses me to damn me: I'll have grounds More relative than this: — the play's the thing Wherein I'll catch the conscience of the king.
Page 112 - ... though I am always serious, I do not know what it is to be melancholy; and can therefore take , a view of nature, in her deep and solemn scenes, with the same pleasure as in her most gay and delightful ones.
Page 116 - How lov'd, how honour'd once, avails thee not, To whom related, or by whom begot ; A heap of dust alone remains of thee, 'Tis all thou art, and all the proud shall be ! Poets themselves must fall, like those they sung, Deaf the prais'd ear, and mute the tuneful tongue.
Page 50 - The glories of our blood and state Are shadows, not substantial things ; There is no armour against fate ; Death lays his icy hand on kings : Sceptre and crown Must tumble down, And in the dust be equal made With the poor crooked scythe and spade.
Page 239 - Poured through the mellow horn her pensive soul : And, dashing soft from rocks around, Bubbling runnels joined the sound ; Through glades and glooms the mingled measure stole, Or, o'er some haunted stream, with fond delay, Round an holy calm diffusing, Love of peace, and lonely musing In hollow murmurs died away.
Page 154 - Wisely regardful of the embroiling sky, In joyless fields and thorny thickets leaves His shivering mates, and pays to trusted man His annual visit. Half afraid, he first Against the window beats; then, brisk, alights On the warm hearth; then, hopping o'er the floor, Eyes all the smiling family askance, And pecks, and starts, and wonders where he is! Till, more familiar grown, the table crumbs Attract his slender feet.
Page 58 - I saw plainly all the paint of that kind of life, the nearer I came to it; and that beauty, which I did not fall in love with, when, for aught I knew, it was real, was not like to bewitch or entice me, when I saw that it was adulterate.
Page 111 - I felt at that time : but I could, without tears, reflect upon many pleasing adventures I have had with some, who have long been blended with common earth. Though it is by the benefit of nature, that length of time thus blots out the violence of afflictions ; yet with tempers too much given to pleasure, it is almost necessary to...
Page 118 - Through rocks amidst the foaming sea, To gain thy love, and then perceives Thou wert not in the rocks and waves. The silent heart which grief assails, Treads soft and lonesome o'er the vales, Sees daisies open, rivers run, And seeks, as I have vainly done, Amusing thought ; but learns to know That solitude 's the nurse of woe.

Bibliographic information