Classical Echoes in Tennyson

By Wilfred P. Mustard | Go to book overview

III.

TENNYSON AND THEOCRITUS. 1

Tennyson's admiration for " the little Theocritean Idyll 'Hylas'" is recorded in a striking passage of the Memoir (ii. 495). It is interesting to find that one of the 'English Idyls' is directly modelled upon this favorite poem, and, curiously enough, the story proper is told in exactly the same number of lines. Compare the opening lines of 'Godiva,'

" Not only we, the latest seed of Time,
New men, that in the flying of a wheel
Cry down the past, not only we, that prate
Of rights and wrongs, have loved the people well,
And loathed to see them overtax'd; but she
Did more, and underwent, and overcame,
The woman of a thousand summers back,
Godiva, wife to that grim Earl, who ruled
In Coventry,"

____________________
1
Many of the parallels mentioned here have been pointed out in the sixth chapter of Mr. E. C. Sted-man's 'Victorian Poets.'

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Classical Echoes in Tennyson
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Classical Echoes in Tennyson *
  • Preface *
  • Contents *
  • I - Tennyson and Homer *
  • II - Tennyson and the Greek Lyric Poets *
  • III - Tennyson and Theocritus *
  • IV - Tennyson and Quintus Smyrnaeus *
  • V - Allusions and Parallels to Vari­ Ous Greek Authors *
  • VI - Tennyson and Lucretius *
  • VII - Tennyson and Catullus *
  • VIII - Tennyson and Virgil *
  • IX - Tennyson and Horace *
  • X - Allusions and Parallels to Various Latin Authors *
  • XI - Appendices *
  • Index of Passages Cited from Tennyson *
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