By A.V.C. Schmidt
Ardour and Precision includes twenty essays on a number of significant medieval and smooth English and Irish poets. the 1st half involves 3 chapters on Chaucer, together with a considerable new learn of Troilus and Criseyde, 4 on Chaucer's nice modern the Pearl-poet, and one evaluating the 2 poets. The center of the second one half is six chapters on T. S. Eliot, 3 of them pioneering explorations of his poetic language. they're preceded via 3 on Hopkins, Shelley and Yeats (including a brand new examine of Yeats's verse-technique), and by way of one on David Jones and Auden, and on Geoffrey Hill and Seamus Heaney. The formerly released essays were generally revised, supplemented with appendixes and cross-referenced, and a whole Bibliography and Index are supplied. the writer brings to his interpreting of ten consultant poets from extensively separated classes of English literature, the fourteenth and the 20 th centuries, a similar passionate and unique consciousness as they dropped at their writing.
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Additional resources for Passion and Precision: Collected Essays on English Poetry from Geoffrey Chaucer to Geoffrey Hill
19 20 Chapter I 4) Ovid, Metamorphoses I 99-106 Aurea prima sata est aetas, quae vindice nullo, sponte sua, sine lege, fidem rectumque colebat. poena metusque aberant; nec verba minantia fixo aere ligabantur, nec supplex turba timebat iudicis ora sui, sed erant sine vindice tuti. nondum caesa suis, peregrinum ut viseret orbem, montibus in liquidas pinus descenderat undas, nullaque mortales praeter sua litora norant. nondum praecipites cingebant oppida fossae; non tuba directi, non aeris cornua flexi, non galeae, non ensis erant: sine militis usu mollia securae peragebant otia gentes.
The work I have been calling a poetic novel Chaucer himself described as litel myn tragedye (V 1786). 21 The word tragedye is defined in the Monk’s Prologue (VII 1973-82)22 and it occurs in Troilus at the point when the hero, after extreme emotional suffering, is about to be delivered out of his ‘cares colde’ (V 1747). Chaucer’s address to his book (V 1786-92) is positioned between three stanzas asserting that his subject has been Troilus’s love and that Criseyde’s guilt was no fault of the author’s (whose main concern is with women betrayed by men ([V 1765-85]), and a stanza expressing anxiety about the poem’s textual and metrical integrity in transmission and a fervent plea that it should ‘be understonde’.
But the anguysschous love of havynge brenneth in folk more cruely than the fyer of the mountaigne of Ethna that ay brenneth. Allas! what was he that first dalf up the gobbettes or the weyghtes of gold covered undir erthe and the precyous stones that wolden han be hydd? He dalf up precious periles. (That is to seyn, that he that hem firsst up dalf, he dalf up a precious peril; for-why, for the preciousnesse of swich thyng hath many man ben in peril). Structure, Language and Myth in Chaucer’s The Former Age 3) John Walton, Boethius II, m.