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pathy between myself and others which the ardent and unbounded love I cherished for my kind incited me to acquire. I expected all sorts of stupidity and insolent contempt from those ...
... These compositions (excepting the tragedy of The Cenci, which was written rather to try my powers, than to unburthen my full heart) are insufficiently ... commendation than perhaps they deserve, even from their bitterest enemies; but they have not attained any corresponding popularity. As a man, I shrink from notice and regard ; the ebb and flow of the world vexes me; I desire to be left in peace. Persecution, contumely, and calumny, have been heaped upon me in profuse measure; and domestic conspiracy and legal oppression have violated in my person the most sacred rights of nature and humanity. The bigot will say it was the recompence of my errors ; the man of the world will call it the result of my imprudence; but never upon one head. . .
... Reviewers, with some rare exceptions, are a most stupid and malignant race. As a bankrupt thief turns thief-taker in despair, so an unsuccessful author turns critic. But a young spirit panting for fame, doubtful of its powers, and certain only of its aspirations, is ill-qualified to assign its true value to the sneer of this world. He knows not that such stuff as this is of the abortive and monstrous births which Time consumes as fast as it produces. He sees the truth and falsehood, the merits and demerits, of his case inextricably entangled... No personal offence should have drawn from me this public comment upon such stuff. . .
... The offence of this poor victim seems to have consisted solely in his intimacy with Leigh Hunt, Mr. Hazlitt, and some other enemies of despotism and superstition. My friend Hunt has a very hard skull to crack, and will take a deal of killing. I do not know much of Mr. Hazlitt, but...
... I knew personally but little of Keats; but on the news of his situation I wrote to him, suggesting the propriety of trying the Italian climate, and inviting him to join me. Unfortunately he did not allow me. . .
PASSAGES OF THE POEM. And ever as he went he swept a lyre Of unaccustomed shape, and strings. Now like the
of impetuous fire, Which shakes the forest with its murmurings, Now like the rush of the aërial wings Of the enamoured wind among the treen, Whispering unimaginable things,
And dying on the streams of dew serene, Which feed the unmown meads with ever
* * * * * And the green Paradise which western waves Embosom in their ever-wailing sweep, Talking of freedom to their tongueless caves, Or to the spirits which within them keep A record of the wrongs which, though they
sleep, Die not, but dream of retribution, heard His hymns,' and echoing them from steep to
steep, 1 This passage is supposed to refer to Moore.—ED.
* And then came one of sweet and earnest
looks, Whose soft smiles to his dark and night-like
eyes Were as the clear and ever-living brooks Are to the obscure fountains whence they
Of earth-awakening morn upon the brow
His song, though very sweet, was low and
A mighty Phantasm, half concealed In darkness of his own exceeding light, Which clothed his awful presence unrevealed, Charioted on the
night Of thunder-smoke, whose skirts were chryso
And like a sudden meteor, which outstrips ? Leigh Hunt.—ED.
? Probably the allusion is to Coleridge. Compare the passage with that in the Letter to Maria Gisborne, describing him as sitting
obscure In the exceeding lustre, and the pure Intense irradiation of a mind, Which with its own internal lightning blind Flags wearily through darkness and despair.-ED..
The splendour-winged chariot of the sun,
eclipse The armies of the golden stars, each one Pavilioned in its tent of light-all strewn Over the chasms of blue night-