John Clare: The Critical Heritage

By Mark Storey | Go to book overview

THE PERIOD 1874-1920

115.

Some late nineteenth-century views of Clare

1887, 1893, 1897

(a) Leslie Stephen (1832-1904), from his article on Clare in the Dictionary of National Biography, 1887. For Lamb’s advice, see No. 64. Edmund Blunden characterized this article as ‘callous and spiritually grotesque’ (Athenaeum, 5 March 1920, no. 4688, 299).

Clare’s poetry is modelled upon that of the cultivated classes, instead of expressing the sentiments of his own class. Lamb advised him to avoid his rustic ‘slang’, and recommended Shenstone’s ‘Schoolmistress’ in preference to ‘Goody’s own language’. Clare becomes less vernacular in his later poems, and the advice may have suited the man. The result is, however, that the want of culture is not compensated by vigour of local colouring. Though Clare shews fine natural taste, and has many exquisite descriptive touches, his poetry does not rise to a really high level and though extraordinary under the circumstances, requires for its appreciation that the circumstances should be remembered.

(b) Richard Henry Stoddard (1825-1903), an American poet, from ‘John Clare’, Under the Evening Lamp, 1893, pp. 120-34:

Poetry was not a mental acquisition and development with Bloomfield and Clare; it was an alms which Nature bestowed upon them in a generous mood, to lighten the dark road they were to travel, and to console them in their misfortunes and sufferings. (p. 121)

The poetry of Clare is what might have been expected from his long familiarity with rural scenery, and his intimate knowledge of country life. Simple as the song of a bird, it is best described by Milton’s phrase, ‘native wood-notes wild’, for art it has none, and only such music as

-298-

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
John Clare: The Critical Heritage
Table of contents

Table of contents

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
/ 454

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.