Percy Bysshe Shelley saw great irony in the fact that his friend Horace Smith, whom he considered the most generous of men, was also a successful stockbroker.With his brother James, Smith published the highly successful literary parody Rejected Addresses (1812), which lampooned Southey, Wordsworth, and Scott. He wrote his sonnet “Ozymandias” in competition with Shelley and was also the author of a popular novel, Brambletye House (1826).
In Egypt's sandy silence, all alone, Stands a gigantic leg, which far off throws The only shadow that the desert knows:— “I am great Ozymandias, ” saith the stone, “The King of Kings; this mighty City shows The wonders of my hand.”—The city's gone, — Nought but the leg remaining to disclose The site of this forgotten Babylon.
We wonder, —and some hunter may express Wonder like ours, when through the wilderness Where London stood, holding the wolf in chase, He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess What powerful but unrecorded race Once dwelt in that annihilated place.
John Clare's first volume, Poems Descriptive of Rural Life and Scenery (1820), was a literary sensation. Of laboring-class origins, Clare was known as a “peasant poet” who had little formal education, who had worked as a farm laborer, and who had no literary pretentions. His aim was to capture the ordinary experience of rural life in a natural idiom.This he did, much as Burns had some decades before. His fame was short-lived, however; he spent the last twenty-five years of his life suffering from severe mental illness and confined to an institution.There, he wrote much of his best poetry, which remained largely unpublished until the twentieth century.
Welcome, pale Primrose! starting up between Dead matted leaves of ash and oak, that strew The every lawn, the wood, and spinney through,
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Publication information: Book title: A Century of Sonnets: The Romantic-Era Revival 1750-1850. Contributors: Paula R. Feldman - Editor, Daniel Robinson - Editor. Publisher: Oxford University Press. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 2003. Page number: 170.
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