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And o'er that holy earth
Scents of the violet's birth

Still come and go!

Oh! then, where wild flowers wave Make ye her mossy grave, ,

In the free air ! Where shower and singing-bird Midst the young leaves are heard

There-lay her there !



PRINCIPAL WORKS :-Endymion : a Poetic Romance, 1818, displaying at once the immaturity and the true poetic fancy of a possibly great poet. It is founded upon the Hellenic myth of the love of Selene (the divinity of the moon) for the young Latmian Shepherd-prince who was eventially kissed into an everlasting sleep by the Eros-smitten goddess. Like 80 much of Coleridge's poetry, it is essentially transcendental and dreamy. It was, as is generally known, assailed with a supererogatory amount of critical acumen or spleen in the Quarterly Review.--Hyperion, an unfinished work, of which Byron professed that it seems actually inspired by the Titans, and is as sublime as Æschylus.' It is founded upon the myth of the Hellenic theology which narrates the attempt of the rebel angels or Titans to dispossess the usurping tyrant Zeus, in favour of the milder régime of Kronos and the other primeral divinities.The Eve of St. Agnes, a mediæval story in the Spenserian stanza.Lamia, in the style of Endymion, suggested by the story of Philostratus, in his Life of Apollonius, of one of those antique witch-fiends called Lamiæ, whose vocation it was, in the guise of beautiful women, to allure and devour too amorous youths.—Isabella, a poetic tale taken from Boccaccio's Decamerone.-Odes to the Bards of Passion and of Mirth, Fancy, and Autumn. All these appeared together in 1820, the year of the poet's death.

If the Endymion and Hyperion can scarcely be classed with the very best English poems, such as The Faery Queen, Comus, or Prometheus Unbound, they contain many beauties and much charming imagery, and are full of the promise of future excellence: ecstatic imagination, and ideas imbued with the spirit of the old Hellenic genius (with which Keats was acquainted only at second-hand), of Spenser, and the best productions of the Italian and English “pastoral' style of the sixteenth and first half of the seveuteenth century.

The want of human interest, on what just grounds (unless the phrase must be limited to mean the serious trifling of ordinary human life) it is not easy to understand, has been often objected to the immortal poems of Shelley ; it is an objection, perhaps, more just in regard to Coleridge or Keats, and in respect of some other poets who are commonly credited with


that merit. In favour of the author of Endymion, however, it must be remembered that it was produced at an age to which an excess of the imaginative faculty, and a proportionate disregard of the realities of life, may easily be excused. It is generally believed, and it seems to have been the conviction of many of his friends at the time, that the critiques of the Quarterly and Blackwood, and other magazines, had hastened, if not actually brought about, the premature end of their victim. To this belief Byron, who for himself had given the critics little reason to celebrate a triumph, gave a sanction in one of the cantos of Don Juan:

• John Keats, who was kill'd off by one critique

Just as he really promised something great,
If not intelligible, without Greek

Contrived to talk about the gods of late,
Much as they might have been supposed to speak.

Poor fellow! his was an untoward fate.
'Tis strange the mind, that very fiery particle,

Should let itself be snuff'd out by an article.' The same conviction, most certainly sincere in the case of Shelley, inspired also that most exquisite of all elegies—the Adonais. Nevertheless, it is probable that the effect of the insolent abuse of the periodicals of the day, as e.g. the taunt that “a starved apothecary was better than a starved poet' (alluding to the beginning of Keats' career in a London hospital) upon his sensitive mind has been exaggerated. Other more real causes seem sufficient to account for the early death of one of the most promising of the priests of the Muses and of the · Bards of Passion.'


A Thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness, but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
Therefore, on every morrow, are we wreathing
A flowery band to bind us to the earth,
Spite of despondence, of the inhuman dearth
Of noble natures, of the gloomy days,
Of all the unhealthy and o'er-darken'd ways

Made for our searching : yes, in spite of all,
Some shape of beauty moves away the pall
From our dark spirits. Such the sun, the moon,
Trees old and young, sprouting a shady boon
For simple sheep; and such are daffodils
With the green world they live in; and clear rills
That for themselves a cooling covert make
'Gainst the hot season; the mid-forest brake,
Rich with a sprinkling of fair musk-rose blooms :
And such too is the grandeur of the dooms
We have imagined for the mighty dead;
All lovely tales that we have heard or read:
An endless fountain of immortal drink,
Pouring unto us from the heaven's brink.




Ever let the Fancy roam,
Pleasure never is at home:
At a touch sweet Pleasure melteth,
Like to bubbles when rain pelteth ;
Then let winged Fancy wander
Through the thought still spread beyond her:
Open wide the mind's cage door,
She'll dart forth, and cloudward soar.
O sweet Fancy! let her loose:
Summer's joys are spoilt by use,
And the enjoying of the Spring
Fades as does its blossoming:
Autumn's red-lipp'd fruitage too,
Blushing through the mist and dew,

Cloys with tasting: what do, then ?
Sit thee by the ingle, when
The sear faggot blazes bright,
Spirit of a winter's night;
When the soundless earth is muffled,
And the caked snow is shuffled
From the ploughboy's heavy shoon;
When the Night doth meet the Moon
In a dark conspiracy
To banish Even from her sky.
Sit thee there, and send abroad,
With a mind self-overaw'd,
Fancy, high-commission'd: send her!
She has vassals to attend her:
She will bring, in spite of frost,
Beauties that the earth hath lost;
She will bring thee, all together,
All delights of summer weather ;
All the buds and bells of May,
From dewy sward or thorny spray;
All the heaped Autumn's wealth,
With a still, mysterious stealth:
She will mix these pleasures up
Like three fit wines in a cup,
And thou shalt quaff it :thou shalt hear
Distant harvest-carols clear :
Rustle of the reaped corn ;
Sweet birds antheming the morn:
And, in the same moment-hark !
'Tis the early April lark,
Or the rooks, with busy caw,
Foraging for sticks and straw.
Thou shalt, at one glance, behold
The daisy and the marigold;

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