Download Alfred Tennyson: A Literary Life by Leonee Ormond PDF

By Leonee Ormond

Throughout his lengthy operating lifestyles, Tennyson was once experimenting with new types and topics. generally learn in a number disciplines, he responsed to the various personalities, occasions and discoveries of the Victorian age. nonetheless extensively considered as an apologist for the 'establishment', Tennyson used to be constantly an interloper. Scourged via reviewers, and haunted via his personal worried disposition, Tennyson continued years of depression. even if the tide grew to become in 1850 Tennyson remained a stern critic of his contemporaries.

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19 By January, Hallam had decided that Tennyson's real ailment was 'extreme nervous irritation ... It is most melancholy that he should have so completely cut himself off from those light mental pleasures, which may seem insignificant in themselves, but in their general operation serve to make a man less unhappy, by making him more sociable, and more disposed therefore to receive satisfaction from the numberless springs of enjoyment which the mechanism of society affords'. 20 Tennyson did not heed the advice, but did leave Somersby when he could, staying with friends in Cambridge or London.

Alfred was in great raptures, only complaining he had so little time to study the place'. 10 Returning in 1846, Tennyson described the Cathedral as 'A fragment, but the wonder of the world' (Ricks, III, 626). Cologne's churches are renowned, not only for their beautiful stained glass, which ravished the two travellers, but also for their medieval and early renaissance statues, among them an outstanding group of 'beautiful madonnas'. The Gothic paintings of the Cologne School, and of Stefan Lochner in particular, appealed to the taste of Arthur Hallam.

Greater access to books inevitably expanded the frame of reference of his own poetry. A substantial proportion of the work in Poems, Chiefly Lyrical is influenced by boyhood reading at Somersby. The Arabian Nights, the poems of Byron and Scott, the account of the Kraken by the Norwegian bishop, Erik Pontoppidan, these were among sources either for subject-matter or for verbal constructions. In Cambridge, Tennyson moved into worlds unexplored by his father. Like many of his contemporaries, he was caught up in the enthusiasm for German literature.

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