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W. Procter_ (_Barry Cornwall_) 170
She 's up and gone, the graceless Girl
_Thomas Hood_ 108
Sing!--Who sings
_B. W. Procter_ (_Barry Cornwall_) 168
Sit down, sad soul, and count
_B. W. Procter_ (_Barry Cornwall_) 178
Sleep sweet, belovëd one, sleep sweet!
_Robert Buchanan_ 46
Sleep! the bird is in its nest
_William Cox Bennett_ 39
Softly, O midnight Hours!
_Audrey de Vere_ 70
Strew not earth with empty stars
_Thomas Lovell Beddoes_ 35
Sweet and low, sweet and low
_Alfred Tennyson_ 215
Sweet is childhood--childhood 's over
_Jean Ingelow_ 120
Sweet mouth! O let me take
_Alfred Domett_ 86

Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean
_Alfred Tennyson_ 213
Terrace and lawn are white with frost
_Mortimer Collins_ 50
Thank Heaven, Ianthe, once again
_Walter Savage Landor_ 132
The fault is not mine if I love you too much
_Walter Savage Landor_ 129
The ladies of St. James's
_Austin Dobson_ 77
The night has a thousand eyes
_F. W. Bourdillon_ 44
The Sea! the Sea! the open Sea!
_B. W. Procter_ (_Barry Cornwall_) 184
The splendour falls on castle walls
_Alfred Tennyson_ 210
The stars are with the voyager
_Thomas Hood_ 110
The streams that wind amid the hills
_George Darley_ 63
The Sun came through the frosty mist
_Lord Houghton_ 115
The Violet invited my kiss
_Joseph Skipsey_ 200
There is no summer ere the swallows come.
_F. W. Bourdillon_ 43
Three fishers went sailing away to the West
_Charles Kingsley_ 124
To sea, to sea! the calm is o'er
_Thomas Lovell Beddoes_ 33
Touch us gently, Time!
_B. W. Procter_ (_Barry Cornwall_) 167
Turn, Fortune, turn thy wheel and lower the proud!
_Alfred Tennyson_ 216
Two doves upon the selfsame branch
_Christina G. Rossetti_ 189

Under the lindens lately sat
_Walter Savage Landor_ 130

Wait but a little while
_Norman Gale_ 99
We have loiter'd and laugh'd in the flowery croft
_Frederick Locker-Lampson_ 134
We heard it calling, clear and low
_Frederick Locker-Lampson_ 137
What is the meaning of the song
_Charles Mackay_ 145
"What will you do, love, when I am going"
_Samuel Lover_ 143
When a warm and scented steam
_George Walter Thornbury_ 228
When along the light ripple the far serenade
_Lord Houghton_ 113
When another's voice thou hearest
_Lady Dufferin_ 88
When I am dead, my dearest
_Christina G. Rossetti_ 186
When I was young, I said to Sorrow
_Aubrey de Vere_ 74
When Spring casts all her swallows forth
_George Walter Thornbury_ 223
When the snow begins to feather
_Lord de Tabley_ 66
Where winds abound
_Michael Field_ 97
Who is the baby, that doth lie
_Thomas Lovell Beddoes_ 36
Winds to-day are large and free
_Michael Field_ 94
With deep affection
_Francis Mahoney_ 149
Woo thy lass while May is here
_Lord de Tabley_ 69

[Decoration]




[Illustration]

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

Their songs wake singing echoes in my land.

Christina Rossetti.


Sweet and low, sweet and low _Frontispiece_
"Oh! let me dream of happy days gone by" 6
Across the Sea 16
"My love on a fair May morning" 24
Song in the Garden 38
The night has a thousand eyes 44
A Game of Chess 50
"I 've been roaming, I 've been roaming" 62
"A maid I know,--and March winds blow" 82
"That bright May morning long ago" 90
"I remember, I remember" 106
I wandered by the brook-side 112
"Three fishers went sailing away to the West" 124
Ianthe 132
Gertrude's Necklace 140
"She turned back at the last to wait" 158
King Death 176
"I looked and saw your eyes" 194
Break, Break, Break 212
"When Spring casts all her swallows forth" 224


[Decoration]




[Illustration]


INTRODUCTION

The writer of prose, by intelligence taught,
Says the thing that will please, in the way that he ought.

Frederick Locker-Lampson.


_No species of poetry is more ancient than the lyrical, and yet none
shows so little sign of having outlived the requirements of human
passion. The world may grow tired of epics and of tragedies, but each
generation, as it sees the hawthorns blossom and the freshness of
girlhood expand, is seized with a pang which nothing but the spasm of
verse will relieve. Each youth imagines that spring-tide and love are
wonders which he is the first of human beings to appreciate, and he
burns to alleviate his emotion in rhyme. Historians exaggerate, perhaps,
the function of music in awakening and guiding the exercise of lyrical
poetry. The lyric exists, they tell us, as an accompaniment to the lyre;
and without the mechanical harmony the spoken song is an artifice. Quite
as plausibly might it be avowed that music was but added to verse to
concentrate and emphasize its rapture, to add poignancy and volume to
its expression. But the truth is that these two arts, though sometimes
happily allied, are, and always have been, independent. When verse has
been innocent enough to lean on music, we may be likely to find that
music also has been of the simplest order, and that the pair of them,
like two delicious children, have tottered and swayed together down the
flowery meadows of experience. When either poetry or music is adult, the
presence of each is a distraction to the other, and each prefers, in the
elaborate ages, to stand alone, since the mystery of the one confounds
the complexity of the other. Most poets hate music; few musicians
comprehend the nature of poetry; and the combination of these arts has
probably, in all ages, been contrived, not for the satisfaction of
artists, but for the convenience of their public._

_This divorce between poetry and music has been more frankly accepted in
the present century than ever before, and is nowadays scarcely opposed
in serious criticism. If music were a necessary ornament of lyrical
verse, the latter would nowadays scarcely exist; but we hear less and
less of the poets devotion (save in a purely conventional sense) to the
lute and the pipe. What we call the Victorian lyric is absolutely
independent of any such aid. It may be that certain songs of Tennyson
and Christina Rossetti have been with great popularity "set," as it is
called, "to music." So far as the latter is in itself successful, it
stultifies the former; and we admit at last that the idea of one art
aiding another in this combination is absolutely fictitious. The
beauty--even the beauty of sound--conveyed by the ear in such lyrics as
"Break, break, break," or "When I am dead, my dearest," is obscured, is
exchanged for another and a rival species of beauty, by the most
exquisite musical setting that a composer can invent._

_The age which has been the first to accept this condition, then, should
be rich in frankly lyrical poetry; and this we find to be the case with
the Victorian period. At no time has a greater mass of this species of
verse been produced, not even in the combined Elizabethan and Jacobean
age. But when we come to consider the quality of this later harvest of
song, we observe in it a far less homogeneous character. We can take a
piece of verse, and decide at sight that it must be Elizabethan, or of
the age of the Pléiade in France, or of a particular period in Italy.
Even an ode of our own eighteenth century is hardly to be confounded
with a fragment from any other school. The great Georgian age introduced
a wide variety into English poetry; and yet we have but to examine the
selected jewels strung into so exquisite a carcanet by Mr. Palgrave in
his "Golden Treasury" to notice with surprise how close a family
likeness exists between the contributions of Shelley, Wordsworth, Keats,
and Byron.



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