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Regency Newspapers and Magazines
Great Writers of the Regency Period
The great literature of the Regency age resounds through the years.

 

January 2017 ----- My Regency World of literature is continuing at Pinterest; see my latest research finds at https://www.pinterest.com/lesleyannemcl/my-regency-world-literature-and-authors/

 

My Latest Research Additions 2015
Henry Crabb Robinson 1775-1867
Dorothy Wordsworth 1771-1855
William Blake 1757-1827

"The scornful treatment of my friends Wordsworth, Lamb, etc., etc., always incensed me against the Edinburgh Review."

from Diary and Reminiscences
May 13, 1812

"Oh, the unutterable darkness of the sky, and the earth below the moon! and the glorious brightness of the moon itself!"

from Journals, March 18, 1802

"I have always found that Angels have the vanity to speak of themselves as the only wise; this they do with a confident insolence sprouting from systematic reasoning."

from The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, 1790

 

Helen Maria Williams 1762-1827

To the Curlew

Soothed by the murmurs on the sea-beat shore,
His dun-grey plumage floating to the gale,
The curlew blends his melancholy wail
With those hoarse sounds the rushing waters pour.
Like thee, congenial bird! my steps explore
The bleak lone sea-beach, or the rocky dale,
And shuns the orange bower, the myrtle vale,
Whose gay luxuriance suits my soul no more.
I love the ocean's broad expanse, when dressed
In limpid clearness, or when tempests blow;
When the smooth currents on its placid breast
Flow calm as my past moments used to flow;
Or, when its troubled waters refuse to rest,
And seem the symbol of my present woe.

   

 

Robert Burns 1759-1796

Anna, thy Charms (song)

ANNA, thy charms my bosom fire,
And waste my soul with care;
But ah! how bootless to admire,
When fated to despair!

Yet in thy presence, lovely Fair,
To hope may be forgiven;
For sure ’twere impious to despair
So much in sight of heaven.

   

Laetitia Elizabeth Landon 1802-1838

Secrets

LIFE has dark secrets; and the hearts are few
That treasure not some sorrow from the world--
A sorrow silent, gloomy, and unknown,
Yet colouring the future from the past.
We see the eye subdued, the practised smile,
The word well weighed before it pass the lip,
And know not of the misery within:
Yet there it works incessantly, and fears
The time to come; for time is terrible,
Avenging, and betraying.

   

Jane Austen 1775-1817

Persuasion -- An excerpt

"She was persuaded to believe the engagement a wrong thing: indiscreet, improper, hardly capable of success, and not deserving it. But it was not a merely selfish caution under which she acted, in putting an end to it. Had she not imagained herself consulting his good, even more than her own, she could hardly have given him up. The belief of being prudent and self-denying, principally for his advantage, was her chief consolation under the misery of a parting, a final parting; and every consolation was required, for she had to encounter all the additional pain of opinions, on his side, totally unconvinced and unbending, and of his feeling himself ill-used by so forced a relinquishment. He had left the country in consequence.

A few months had seen the beginning and the end of their acquaintance; but not with a few months ended Anne's share of suffering from it. Her attachment and regrets had, for a long time, clouded every enjoyment of youth, and an early loss of bloom and spirits had been their lasting effect."

   

George Noel Gordon, Lord Byron 1788-1824

She Walks in Beauty

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impair'd the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!

 


Mary Russell Mitford 1787-1855

Our Village - An excerpt

" Soon after the rejection of this most philosophical of all discarded swains, an important change too place in the neighbourhood, in the shape of a new occupant of the great farm. The quiet respectable old couple, who had resided there for half a century, had erected the mossy sundial, and planted the great mulberry tree, having determined to retire from busness, were succeeded by a new tenant from a distant county, the youngest son of a gentleman brought up to agricultural pursuits, whose spirit and activity, his boldness in stocking and cropping, and his scientific management of manures and machinery, formed the strongest possible contrast with the old-world practices of his predecessors. All the village was full of admiration of the intelligent young farmer, Edward Grey, who, being unmarried, and of a kindly and sociable disposition, soon became familiar with high and low, and was nowhere a greater favourite than with his opposite neighbour, our good miller."

   

 


William Wordsworth
1770-1850


In London, September 1802

O Friend! I know not which way I must look
For comfort, being, as I am, opprest,
To think that now our life is only drest
For show; mean handy-work of craftsman, cook,
Or groom!--We must run glittering like a brook
In the open sunshine, or we are unblest:
The wealthiest man among us is the best:
No grandeur now in nature or in book
Delights us. Rapine, avarice, expense,
This is idolatry; and these we adore:
Plain living and high thinking are no more:
The homely beauty of the good old cause
Is gone; our peace, our fearful innocence,
And pure religion breathing household laws.

   

 

 

Amelia Alderston Opie 1769-1853

On the Approach of Autumn

Farewell gay Summer! now the changing wind
That Autumn brings commands thee to retreat;
It fades the roses which thy temples bind,
And the green sandals which adorn thy feet.

Now flies with thee the walk at eventide,
That favouring hour to rapt enthusiasts dear;
When most they love to seek the mountain side,
And mark the pomp of twilight hastening near.

Then fairy forms around the poet throng,
On every cloud a glowing charm he sees....
Sweet Evening, these delights to thee belong:....
But now, alas! comes Autumn's chilling breeze,
And early Night, attendant on its sway,
Bears in her envious veil sweet Fancy's hour away.

   

John Keats
1795-1821


When I have fears that I may cease to be

When I have fears that I may cease to be
Before my pen has glean’d my teeming brain,
Before high piled books, in charactry,
Hold like rich garners the full ripen’d grain;
When I behold, upon the night’s starr’d face,
Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
And think that I may never live to trace
Their shadows, with the magic hand of chance;
And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,
That I shall never look upon thee more,
Never have relish in the fairy power
Of unreflecting love; - then on the shore
Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
Till love and fame to nothingness do sink.

January 1818


   
Maria Edgeworth 1767-1849

Castle Rackrent - An excerpt

"But still my lady sobbed and sobbed, and called herself the most wretched of women; and among other out-of-the-way provoking things, asked my master, was he fit company for her, and he drinking all night? This nettling him, which it was hard to do, he replied, that as to drinking all night, he was then as sober as she was herself, and that it was no matter how much a man drank, provided it did noways affect or stagger him: that as to being fit company for her, he thought himself of a family to be fit company for any lord or lady in the land; but that he never prevented her from seeing and keeping what company she pleased, and that he had done his best to make Castle Rackrent pleasing to her since her marriage, having always had the house full of visitors, and if her own relations were not amongst them, he said that was their own fault, and their pride's fault, of which he was sorry to find her ladyship had so unbecoming a share. So concluding, he took his candle and walked off to his room, and my lady was in her tantarums for three days after; and would have been so much longer, no doubt, but some of her friends, young ladies, and cousins, and second cousins, came to Castle Rackrent, ...."
 

Percy Bysshe Shelley 1792-1822

Love's Philosophy

I
The fountains mingle with the river
And the rivers with the Ocean,
The winds of Heaven mix for ever
With a sweet emotion;
Nothing in the world is single;
All things by a law divine
In one spirit meet and mingle,
Why not I with thing?--

II
See the mountains kiss high Heaven
And the waves clasp one another;
No sister-flower would be forgiven
If it disdained its brother;
And the sunlight clasps the earth
And the moonbeams kiss the sea:
What is all this sweet work worth
If thou kiss not me?

   
Sir Walter Scott 1771-1832

Guy Mannering -- An excerpt

" It was in the beginning of the month of November 17--when a young English gentleman, who had just left the university of Oxford, made use of the liberty afforded him to visit some parts of the north of England; and curiosity extended his tour into the adjacent frontier of the sister country. He had visited, on the day that opens our history, some monastic ruins in the county of Dumfries, and spent much of the day in making drawings of them from different points, so that, on mounting his horse to resume his journey, the brief and gloomy twilight of the season had already commenced. His way lay through a wide tract of black moss, extending for miles on each side and before him. Little eminences arose like islands on its surface, bearing here and there patches of corn, which even at this season was green, and sometimes a hut or farm-house, shaded by a willow or two and surrounded by large elder-bushes. These insulated dwellings communicated with each other by winding passages through the moss, impassable by any but the natives themselves."
 
Hannah More 1745-1833

Sensibility: An Epistle to the Honourable Mrs. Boscawen

An excerpt--

Yes, still for you your gentle stars dispense
The charm of friendship and the feast of sense:
Yours is the bliss, and Heav'n no dearer sends,
To call the wisest, brightest, best, your friends.
And while to thee I raise the votive line,
O let me grateful own these friends are mine;
With CARTER trace the wit to Athens known,
Or view in MONTAGU that wit our own;
Or mark, well pleas'd, CHAPONE'S instructive page,
Intent to raise the morals of the age:
Or boast, in WALSINGHAM, the various power
To cheer the lonely, grace the letter'd hour;
DELANEY, too, is ours; serenely bright;
Wisdom's strong ray, and virtue's milder light:
And she who bless'd the friend, and grac'd the lays
Of poignant SWIFT, still gilds our social days;
Long, long, protract thy light, O star benign!
Whose setting beams with milder lustre shine.
 
Samuel Taylor Coleridge 1772-1834

To Nature

It may indeed be fantasy when I
Essay to draw from all created things
Deep, heartfelt, inward joy that closely clings;
And trace in leaves and flowers that round me lie
Lessons of love and earnest piety.
So let it be; and if the wide world rings
In mock of this belief, it brings
Nor fear, nor grief, nor vain perplexity.
So will I build my altar in the fields,
And the blue sky my fretted dome shall be,
And the sweet fragrance that the wild flower yields
Shall be the incense I will yield to Thee,
Thee only God! and thou shalt not despise
Even me, the priest of this poor sacrifice.