The Darkening Glass: A Portrait of Ruskin's Genius

By John D. Rosenberg | Go to book overview

WILDERNESS

IX. UNSTABLE AS WATER

Ruskin read in Jacob's deathbed prophecy to his son Reuben-- "Unstable as water, thou shalt not excel"--a judgment upon his own work. Ruskin's reader, too, cannot fail to note the growing instability of temper and uncertainty of direction which mark his writing after the publication of Unto This Last in 1860. Increasingly, the agonies and obsessions of his personal life obtrude into his books, at once robbing them of coherence and enriching them with a peculiarly intimate and moving poignancy. He had always written out of an almost frantic urge for self-expression, a need to record all that he had ever seen or felt or thought. But during the 1860s he wrote less to register his observations than to voice his perplexity and pain, to escape from an enfolding isolation which found him beloved yet incapable of loving, ever in company yet ever alone. As the inner pressures mounted, he brought to bear upon his own psyche the great gifts of penetration and expression that he had previously focused upon external nature. He became, ultimately, his own subject.

We must ourselves risk a certain chaos in charting the chaotic course of Ruskin's career through this decade. It opens with Unto This Last, a model of lucidity and the last wholly sane book he wrote. It closes with The Queen of the Air, brilliant but erratic lectures on Greek myths of "Cloud and Storm" which tell us more of the tempest raging in his mind than of the Greek gods of cloud and air. Yet his lecture on "The Flamboyant Architecture of the Valley of the Somme," also written in 1869, is distinguished by a clarity and grace unsurpassed in the whole canon of his works. There was no sudden, irretrievable collapse into incoherence, nor

-147-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Darkening Glass: A Portrait of Ruskin's Genius
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations - Taken from Drawings by John Ruskin ix
  • Preface xi
  • Art 1
  • I - Nature, Truth, and Turner 1
  • II - Mountain Gloom and Mountain Glory 22
  • Architecture 47
  • III - A Gothic Eden 47
  • IV - Windows of Agate 64
  • V - Venice: Stones and Touchstones 79
  • Society 107
  • VI - My Father's House 107
  • VII - Dives and Lazarus 121
  • VIII - No Wealth but Life 131
  • Wilderness 147
  • IX 147
  • X - The Night Cometh 176
  • Peace 201
  • XI - The Past Recaptured 201
  • Notes 227
  • Bibliography 253
  • Acknowledgments 263
  • Index 265
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 276

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.