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my condition overwhelmed me. like passing from life into eternity. Every year to be as long as three, i. e., to have three times as much real time-time that is my own, in it! I wandered about thinking I was happy, but feeling I was not. But that tumultuousness is passing off, and I begin to understand the nature of the gift. Holidays, even the annual month, were always uneasy joys; their conscious fugitiveness; the craving after making the most of them. Now, when all is holiday, there are no holidays. I can sit at home, in rain or shine, without a restless impulse for walkings. I am daily steadying, and shall soon find it as natural to me to be my own master, as it has been irksome to have had a master. “I eat, drink, and sleep sound as ever. I lay no anxious schemes for going hither and thither, but take things as they occur. Yesterday I excursioned twenty miles; to-day I write a few letters. Pleasuring was for fugitive playdays; mine are . fugitive only in the sense that life is fugitive. Freedom and life coexistent!”
THE FIGHT 533. 24. The Fancy. Sportsmen, especially
polmos, I. 209 f. 634. 104. One of the mails. One of the mail
Follows so the ever-running year, With profitable labor.” Henry V, IV. i.
528. 312. Villatic. Of the village; the quota
tion is from Samson Agonistes.
THE SUPERANNUATED MAN One of the most autobiographically exact of Lamb's essays.
Lamb was a clerk in the service of the East India Company for thirty-three years, resigning his post in March, 1825, on a pension of twothirds his regular salary, Sera tamen, etc. Quoted from Virgil's first eclogue: Liberty, though late, yet looked
upon, or visited, me. 630. 162. Boldero . . . Lacy. Fictitious
names under which Lamb conceals the directors of the East India Company.
164. Esto perpetua. Be thou eternal. 631. 241. A Tragedy by Sir Robert Howard.
The Vestal Virgin, or the Roman Ladies;
of monks was founded by St. Bruno
John Gilpin's Ride.
III. i. 31.
637. 437. Hogarth. See note on The Praise of
Chimney Sweepers, p. 523, 1. 181.
William Cobbett (1766-
“Alas, Leviathan is not so tamed." 638. 551. The Game Chicken. The nom de
guerre of Henry Pearce, a well-known
An English weight, legally fourteen pounds. 640. 826. Sir Fopling Flutter. A fashionable
fop in Etherege's comedy, The Man of
Mode, or Sir Fopling Flutler. 541. 889. Procul este profani. Æneid, VI.
258. Stay far off, unholy ones.
ON GOING A JOURNEY 642. 30. May plume her feathers, etc. Comus,
a cover. 643. 97. Sterne. The Rev. Laurence Sterne
(1713-1768), author of A Sentimental
Journey and Tristram Shandy. 644. 170. All-Foxden. Near Nether-Stowey,
Somersetshire, where Hazlitt visited his
note on I. 889. 645. 312. Gribelin's engravings. Simon Gri
belin (1661-1733), an engraver of some
See The Fight, note on l. 906. 646. 381. Where is he now? In 1822, when
this essay was first published, Coleridge's creative power was in eclipse, and his whole constitution broken by ill health
and the use of laudanum. 647. 472. Stonehenge. A prehistoric monu
DE QUINCEY CONFESSIONS OF AN OPIUM-EATER The text here used is the briefer and better known version which appeared in the London Magazine in 1821, and was reprinted in the first edition of 1822; an expanded version was published in Sela.
tions Grave and Gay, 1856. 552. 108. Archididascalus. Head master. 663. 180. I came to leave —— The Man
chester Grammar School.
Manchester Cathedral. 664. 293. Lustrum. Period of five years. 315. νυχθήμερον. .
ment in the shape of a roughly circular group of huge monoliths, on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire.
A day of twenty-
ence, l. 77.
1819, the hero of which was an opium-
hence the title.
tion, xx: 12.
War may be said to have begun when
published she became priestess. Compare with Landor's treatment, stanzas 26-29 of Tennyson's Dream of Fair Women.
563. 649. Marston Moor, Newbury,
Naseby. Battlefields of the war.
laboratory of the peoples. 669. 764–7. Brahma . . . Osiris, etc. The
first three Hindu deities, the last two Egyptian.
SUSPIRIA DE PROFUNDIS
661. De Quincey planned a series of approximately twenty papers,
Sighs from the Depths,” of which that here reprinted is one of the earliest. The series was never completed, only six being published. De Quincey had himself experienced the sorrows he writes of,—the death of father and sisters, social ostracism, and a subjection to opium which might easily have
driven him mad.
of the Pope's power.
294. The tents of Shem. Shem, son of
570. Enone was a nymph of Mt. Ida near
Troy, beloved by Paris, but deserted by him after Venus, as a reward for his decision that she was most beautiful of the goddesses, had promised him the fairest
woman in the world, Helen, for his wife. 671. 39, 40. As yonder walls, etc. According
to one form of the story Apollo raised the
81. Iris. Messenger of the gods.
170, 171. Idalian, Paphian. At Idalia and Paphos, in Crete, were special
shrines to Venus. 673. 220. The Abominable. Eris, goddess of
strife. 674. 257. The Greek woman. Helen. 259. Cassandra.
Daughter of Priam, gifted with a power of prophecy, but doomed never to be believed. She foretold the fall of Troy.
gracious ones," a euphemistic name for
the Furies. 666. 380. Accomplished. Made perfect.
THE LOTOS-EATERS Based on Homer's account of how Ulysses and his mariners touched at the land of the lotos, the eating of whose flower produced forgetfulness of home.
A DREAM OF FAIR WOMEN
THE DEATH OF ARTEMIDORA 666. 11. Iris. Messenger of the gods, who
liberated the souls of the dying by loosening their hair.
676. 5. Dan. Don, Master, from Latin
Latin testudo; the name applied to the mode of defence used by the Roman legionaries in attacking a walled city, the holding and interlocking of their shields over their heads to form a solid protection against missiles hurled
from the walls.
100. One that stood beside. Iphigeneia,
127. A queen. Cleopatra. 677. 146. Canopus. One of the brightest stars
of the southern sky.
155. The other. Octavius Cæsar.
cf. Judges, xi.
255. Eleanor. Wife of Henry II. 679.259. To Fulvia's waist. “ Cleopatra puts
the name of the wife of her para mour
IPHIGENEIA AND AGAMEMNON
567. Because Agamemnon had slain a stag
sacred to Diana, the goddess held the Grecian fleet, gathered for the Trojan war, in port at Aulis. Calchas, the soothsayer, reported that according to the oracle the goddess's wrath would endure until Iphigeneia, daughter of Agamemnon, should be sacrificed to her. According to one form of the story, Diana did not allow the sacrifice to be consummated, but carried Iphigeneia to Tauris, where
Antony for that of Eleanor, wife of Rosa
mond's paramour.” (Rolfe.) 679. 263. Captain of my dreams. Venus, the
moon, not eyes, as has sometimes been
suggested. 591. 1. Wild bird. The nightingale, whose song
has always been celebrated for passionate
THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE
694. Written to commemorate a fatal charge
at Balaclava in the Crimean War, 1854; the poem was based on a phrase in the London Times's account of the battle: “Some one had blundered.”
NORTHERN FARMER Written in the Lincolnshire dialect. “It is a vivid piece out of the great comedy of man, not of its mere mirth, but of that elemental humorousness of things which belongs to the lives of the brutes as well as to ourselves, that steady quaintness of the ancient earth and all who are born of her . . . continually met in the peasant and farmer class." (Stopford Brooke: Tennyson, His Art and Relation to Modern Life).
MORTE D'ARTHUR Written in 1835, first published in 1842; afterwards incorporated, with additions, in The Passing of Arthur in Idylls of the King. Cf. Malory's account, pp. 47.ff. 4. Lyonnesse. A legendary country, including part of Cornwall, now supposed
to be submerged beneath the sea. 680. 21. Camelot. Arthur's capital.
23. Merlin. Arthur's magician and chief
woven with gold thread. 581. 139. Northern morn. Aurora Borealis.
140. Moving isles. Icebergs.
with that of l. 65 and l. 112. 682. 186–192. The contrast between the first
five lines of this passage and the last two is one of the best examples in English verse of the fitting of sound to sense; for
a similar effect cf. ll. 49-51. 683. 242. One good custom should corrupt the
world. “ E. g., chivalry, by formation of
697. Tennyson found the story in Raleigh's
spirited account; see p. 103.
599. Based on an incident read by Tennyson
in a magazine. For significance of title
see 2 Samuel, xxi. 600. 73. Election and Reprobation. Calvinis
tic doctrines; all men were supposed to be damned for original sin, except a chosen few whom God elected for salvation.
MERLIN AND THE GLEAM
ULYSSES “ The poem was written soon after Arthur Hallam's death, and it gives the feeling about the need of going forward and braving the struggle of life perhaps more simply than anything in In Memoriam." (Tennyson's note.) 10. Rainy Hyades. The constellation Hyades was associated by the ancients
with stormy weather. 684. 26. Every hour is saved. Every hour
that is saved is something more.
601. An allegory of Tennyson's literary life.
For commentary see the preface to the present Lord Tennyson's Memoir of his father.
CROSSING THE BAR 603. Tennyson directed that this poem should
be placed at the end of all collected editions of his works.
590. Composed in memory of Arthur Henry
Hallam, whose acquaintance Tennyson made at Cambridge, and who was later engaged to Tennyson's sister. He died at Vienna in 1833, and the lyrics composing the poem were written at various times between then and 1850, the date of their final arrangement and publication. 5. Orbs of light and shade. Sun and
Cavaliers, whose long curls fell upon their shoulders. • Roundheads," the name frequently applied to the Puritans, has the same implication. Parliament. The Long Parliament, controlled by the
Puritan party. 603. 7. Pym. One of the Puritan leaders in
the Long Parliament, as were Hampden,
MEMORABILIA 616. The speaker, in contrast with the person
he addresses, is so intense an admirer of Shelley that it seems to him that if he could once have seen and spoken with the poet the meeting would have dwarfed in importance all the other events of his life. Browning in his youth admired Shelley greatly.
MY LAST DUCHESS
THE LOST LEADER
604. Suggested by Wordsworth's change from
Liberalism to Conservatism in politics, though Browning expressly denied that he was in any way attempting a portrait of Wordsworth.
HOW THEY BROUGHT THE GOOD NEWS 606. Browning wrote: “ There is no sort of
historical foundation about 'Good News from Ghent. I wrote it under the bulwark of a vessel off the African coast, after I had been at sea long enough to appreciate even the fancy of a gallop on the back of a certain good horse' York,' then in my stable at home.”
PARTING AT MORNING
606. Companion piece to Meeting at Night;
the speaker is, in each case, a man.
The dramatic monologue, Browning's favorite poetic form, and one which he uses with the utmost skill, presents some difficulty to the reader on account of its directness and compression. It differs from the soliloquy, e. g., of Shakespeare, in that the presence of a second person, a listener, is to be inferred; oftentimes the speaker responds to a question or gesture, implied only in the answer, on the part of this silent listener. Cf. My Last Duchess, II. 53-54. It is a good plan for the student to read the poem through once or twice in an effort to get the situation and some conception of the speaker's character before trying to discover the meaning of each line.
The poem may then be studied in detail; it should be noted that no break in the thought, no interjection, is without its significance.
The speaker is Duke of Ferrara, one of the oldest and proudest of the Italian communes. There could be no greater contrast in character than that between the Duke-of impeccable manners and exquisite artistic taste, but selfish to the core and absolutely heartless-and the young, Duchess-naïve, filled with the joy of life, whose graciousness springs from a heart pure and generous. 3. Frà. Brother. Pandolf, an imaginary character, is a monk, like so many of the
painters of the Italian Renaissance. 616. 9. Since none puts by, etc.
thesis gives a hint of the Duke's esteem
SOLILOQUY OF THE SPANISH CLOISTER 606. 39. Arian. The Arian heresy held that
Christ was created by God, and was
inferior to God in nature and dignity. 607. 56. Manichee. Manicheans were a sect
in the early Christian centuries who combined Persian and Christian beliefs.
HOME-THOUGHTS, FROM THE SEA The speaker is on shipboard, off the northwest coast of Africa. 1. Cape St. Vincent. On the southwest coast of Spain, where Nelson defeated a Spanish fleet in 1797. 3. Trafalgar.
The scene of Nelson's victory in 1805. 5. Say. Imperative; “ let him say.”
For the situation see i Samuel, xvi: 14-23.