Coleridge Darker Reflections 1834 (V. 2)
- Publish Date: 1998-10-19
- Binding: Hardcover
- Author: Richard Holmes
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Winner of the 1989 Whitbread Prize for Book of the Year, this is the first volume of Holmes's seminal two-part examination of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, one of Britain's greatest poets. Richard Holmes's biography of Coleridge transforms our view of the poet of `Kubla Khan' and his place in the Romantic Movement. Dismissed by many as an opium addict, plagiarist, political apostate and mystic charlatan, Holmes's Coleridge leaps out of these pages as the brilliant, animated and endlessly provoking poet of genius that he was. This second volume covers the last 30 years of Coleridge's career (1804-1834) during which he travelled restlessly through the Mediterranean, returned to his old haunts in the Lake District and the West Country, and finally settled in Highgate. It was a period of domestic and professional turmoil. His marriage broke up, his opium addiction increased, he quarrelled with Wordsworth, his own son Hartley Coleridge (a gifted poet himself) became an alcoholic. And after a desperate time of transition, Coleridge re-emerged on the literary scene as a new kind of philosophical and meditative author. Holmes traces the development of Coleridge into a legend amongst the younger generation of Romantic writers and the influence he had on Hazlitt, de Quincey, Byron, Shelley, Keats, Walter Scott, Carlyle, Sterling, F.D. Maurice and others. Coleridge's later life was not happy, either domestically or professionally. But it is continually fascinating and its darker tone is also a measure of its challenge and spiritual impact.
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