Ancestral Voices: Fifty Books from the Romantic Period

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Books tend to be submerged, their importance and individuality lost in the construct of literary history. The reading public of the Romantic period had no idea what its age would come to stand for. To take a sampling of fifty books that made an impact at the time is to see cross-currents and connexions, rising and falling reputations, and quite unexpected patterns emerging. Alongside the great, minor voices turn out to be of importance; the great themselves appear as they first appeared to their contemporaries, ...
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Overview

Books tend to be submerged, their importance and individuality lost in the construct of literary history. The reading public of the Romantic period had no idea what its age would come to stand for. To take a sampling of fifty books that made an impact at the time is to see cross-currents and connexions, rising and falling reputations, and quite unexpected patterns emerging. Alongside the great, minor voices turn out to be of importance; the great themselves appear as they first appeared to their contemporaries, not as time has since created them. There is, as Hazlitt pointed out in 1825, a spirit to the Romantic age, and the books it produced show it in surprising guises and places. Ancestral voices is based on the introductions to the Woodstock Revolution and Romanticism series--but revised and extended--and so constitutes a handy guide to the riches of the series. But it has value beyond that. It may be read cover to cover as a chronological voyage through the period, or sampled at random, book by book. It is indexed so that trends, themes, achievements and careers may be easily uncovered. It thus provides for the reader an insight into the ideological, social and historical underpinning of the revolutionary period, and shows how the poets, playwrights, novelists and thinkers of the time belonged to and transcended it.
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Abbreviations
Introduction 1
1 A guide to the lakes 1784 15
2 Lewesdon hill 1788 20
3 Letters written in France 1790 24
4 Letter to a member of the National Assembly 1791 28
5 Vindiciae gallicae 1791 32
6 Original stories from real life 1791 35
7 The robbers 1792 39
8 The pleasures of memory 1792 43
9 An evening walk 1793 46
10 The complaints of the poor people of England 1793 50
11 A farewell sermon 1794 54
12 The Rowley poems 1794 58
13 Appeal to impartial posterity 1795 62
14 Paul and Virginia 1796 66
15 The iron chest 1796 69
16 Poems on various subjects 1796 72
17 The chase 1796 76
18 The hurricane 1796 79
19 Poems 1797 83
20 The castle spectre 1798 87
21 Memoirs of Wollstonecraft 1798 91
22 A series of plays 1798 95
23 Edmund Oliver 1798 99
24 The lakers 1798 102
25 Fears in solitude 1798 105
26 Lyrical ballads 1798 109
27 Lovers' vows 1798 115
28 Lyrical tales 1800 119
29 Poems chiefly written in retirement 1801 122
30 The poetical works of the late Thomas Little esq 1801 125
31 Eloisa 1803 128
32 A descriptive catalogue 1809 131
33 Remorse 1813 136
34 Queen Mab 1813 140
35 The feast of the poets 1814 145
36 Poems 1815 149
37 Poems 1816 156
38 Wat Tyler 1817 160
39 Poems 1817 164
40 History of a six weeks' tour 1817 167
41 Sibylline leaves 1817 171
42 Political essays 1819 175
43 The vampyre 1819 179
44 Lamia 1820 183
45 Three plays 1821 187
46 Confessions of an English opium-eater 1822 191
47 The spirit of the age 1825 196
48 Songs by the Ettrick shepherd 1831 200
49 The masque of anarchy 1832 203
50 Poems 1833 208
Index 212
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