LIFE: 1770-1850
A Romantic poet of the FIRST GENERATION.

1- Born in the Lake District (like Gray):
-direct contact with nature

-an area of supreme natural beauty: a source of inspiration for the poet

2- Childhood in contact with nature:
Nature and childhood among his predominant themes.

3- Journey to France:
he went to France and h

ere he met the ideals of the French Revolution: he was a Romantic poet of the first generation: at first he followed the ideals of the French Revolution, then he gave them up.

4- Friendship with Coleridge:
Together they wrote "The Lyrical Ballads"

5- Themes:
The preface contains the main features of Wordsworth's poetry:
*Importance of NATURE

*Adult Age
age of sensations
simple ideas and emotions
complex ideas and emotions

*Child : - it is an important theme in his works (like Blake)
- they are in strict contact with nature
he is father of the Man

*The choice of ordinary subjects and ordinary language (a selection of language really used by people) as a way of creating a 'democratic' kind of poetry accessible to all men.
*The Poet as a 'man speaking to men', but with a more lively sensibility; he has a greater knowledge of human nature and a more comprehensive soul (Imagination).
*All human activity is the subject of poetry, as poetry comes out of everyday incidents.

Simple language --> Simple emotions --> Simple life
*Poetry works in and on the human mind through pleasure and it's a 'spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings'.
*Importance of IMAGINATION.


The Solitary Reaper



Ode: Intimations of Immortality


Tintern Abbey

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I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud (Daffodils)

Poem organized in 4 six-line-stanzas;
Each stanza presents an image

Speaker: the Author = poet’s individualism - autobiographical themes
Subject: the Daffodils = nature is alive--> he uses terms for nature that are generally used for people
Lines1-6: description of the setting of the action;
Lines 7-12: description of the daffodils and their glad movements;
Lines 13-18: comparison of the flowers with the waves
Lines 19-24: effects of nature on the poet ---> tranquillity

emotions of the poet when he remembers that scene (emotions recollected in tranquillity).

·Autobiographical poem the poet is speaking about himself and about his feelings. The Poet as 'a man speaking to men'.
·Nature as a source of inspiration that gives great pleasure to men.
·Nature described as a crowd --> metaphor (words usually used for people)
·Poetry originating from emotions recollected in tranquillity.
·Use of simple language to create poetry clear to understand for everybody.

·The poet is wandering alone in the countryside. He sees a field full of golden daffodils, moved by the wind in a continuous dance: The moment of the vision brings happiness for the beauty of the scene, but also the memory of the view will bring the same and even deeper emotions.

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1) - The poet speaks with his voice
-The poem isn’t addressed to anybody in particular
-The poem is set in the Highlands of Scotland, in the fields
-The poem is about a solitary reaper who reaps, cuts and binds the grain while singing a melancholy strain; the poet is unable to understand the words of the song (the girl is probably singing in the old Gaelic language), but this strain delights the poet who keeps the music in his heart.

2) – This poem is divided into four stanzas and each stanza has eight lines.

3) – The poet uses concrete words to describe the girl’s work: for example reap, cut, bind.
The poet uses simple images and common language easy to understand
- In the second stanza there are two comparisons, in fact the poet compares the girl’s voice to the Nightgale’s and Cukoo-bird’s song.

4) In this poem nature is very important;
it is also important the meditation, in fact from the last line (“The music in my heart I bore, long after it was heard no more”) we understand that the action of writings takes place some time after watching the scene, the emotions are recollected in tranquillity.

By Lara Costi - a.sc.: 2003/2004

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- The poet speaks with his voice.
- The poem isn’t addressed to anyone in particular;
- It isn’t set in a real place, but it describes the place where the soul was born, the heaven, through the process of growing up.
- The ode speaks about men's ages: childhood, youth, adult age.
Childhood is the age when the natural world is transfigured by a “celestial light” which is everywhere. It is the age of "sensations".  As the child grows up he loses his visionary power. The stanza V, in particoular, accounts for this progressive loss of harmony with the natural world. Before being born we are in contact with God, but after being born the soul changes his setting and it is relegated in the prison of life. In childhood we are still near our origin, so the children are full of sensations and memory of God.
Youth is the age of simple ideas and emotions.
The man, instead, perceives these sensations die away, and he fades into the light of common day. So adult age is the age of complex ideas and emotions.
2) This ode is a long poem in eleven stanzas, written in blank verse.
3) The language is sometimes abstract, to explain the ode themes and there are some metaphors that represent the key-words of the ode ( the sun as the soul, the prison-house as the life and the east as the celestial light ).

By Francesco Bianchi - anno sc.: 2003/2004

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Layout: Lines. Blank verse
Speaker: the Author
* Nature:
-The main colour is green
-It isn’t an open-landscape
*The Memory:
-It gives the poet:
-Sensations sweet and -a blessed mood
*The passing of the time

The poem was written in 1798. The poem can be defined 'conversional': in fact, though Wordsworth turns to Dorothy, his sister, in the last line only, we get the impression that he has been speaking to her all the time as if to his 'alter ego'.
The poem can be divided into four sections, which show
the progression of the poet's feelings through the different kinds of experience he has with nature.

Lines 1-22 describe the scene, the landscape.
The poem opens with a hint at the time past,
followed by a description of what the poet sees.
At this stage the natural scene is perceived through his senses only.
The scene seems, in fact, to be remote, as if looked at from a distance, and as if the objects were being recreated in his mind by the recollection of the sensations they generated in him.

Lines 22-57 tell what 'these beauteous forms' have meant to Wordsworth during his five years' absence. The emotions he had felt five years before, did not fade away in the course of time but remained deeply impressed in his 'blood' and 'heart'. Recollected in the tranquillity of his 'lonely rooms', they brought him 'sensations sweet', 'tranquil restoration', 'feelings of unremembered pleasure' and 'that blessed mood' in which the burden and mystery of life are 'lightened'. That 'serene and blessed mood' in fact creates a trance-like state, in which all our bodily functions are virtually 'suspended': we become 'a living soul' so that, through the active power of the Imagination, we can penetrate into 'the life of things'.
(SORT OF PANTHEISM: we are nature, the spirit of the nature is the same of the spirit of man because we share with nature the same divinity).

Lines 58-111: the approach of the poet to nature has been modified by time:
a) when he was a child his fusion with nature was instinctive; he became a part of it;
b) later, in his adolescence, his love for nature turned from instinctiveness to 'a passion' and 'an appetite' leading to a kind of ecstasy like that of saints;
c) now maturity has come, and something of the previous paradise has been lost forever. But you can reach ecstasy because you know and understand what you see.

Lines 111-159 are explicitly addressed to his sister Dorothy. There is also a message to men, an invitation to turn to nature for joy and consolation through the function of memory

by Eleonora Casalini




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