A Tennyson Dictionary: The Characters and Place-Names Contained in the Poetical and Dramatic Works of the Poet, Alphabetically Arranged and Described with Synopses of the Poems and Plays

By Arthur E. Baker | Go to book overview

SYNOPSES OF THE POEMS AND PLAYS

ACHILLES OVER THE TRENCH.

A rendering of the Iliad xviii. 202, recounting the help given to Achilles by Pallas and the consequent rout of the Trojans.


ADELINE.

Five stanzas written to a certain 'spiritual Adeline' to describe her charms.


AKBAR'S DREAM.

A supposed conversation in blank verse between Akbar, the great Mogul who ruled India from 1565 to 1605 A.D., and his intimate friend Abul Fazl. The poem is prefaced by a quotation from the writings of Abul Fazl. Akbar was one of the most tolerant rulers who ever lived. No creeds were condemned by him, and he invented a new religion which aimed at being a sort of epitome of the best in all beliefs. In this poem, he tells Abul Fazl that the cause of a temporary depression is the shadow cast by an evil dream. He then expounds his theory of life and religion to Abul. His opinion is that God is in all creeds and that the one intolerable thing is intolerance. But now and then a doubt asserts itself--as when he is troubled by dreams such as the one that he has recently dreamed. In it, he thought he had built
'a sacred
fane,

A temple, neither Pagod,
Mosque, nor Church,'
in which people of all creeds might worship, and in which might dwell
'Truth
and Peace

And Love and Justice'
But while he and Abul stood looking at, and rejoicing in their work there was tumult, and in burst Akbar's well-loved son Saleem, and slew both his father and Abul. 'Death' however 'had ears and eyes,' and Akbar saw his son despoiling the fair building and ruining a life-work. After a time camesome people from the west, 'an alien race,' and again built up the law of toleration and equity, abolishing such monstrous practices as súttee and child-marriage. The poem ends with a morning hymn to the
'Timeless in the
flame that measures Time!'

-1-

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A Tennyson Dictionary: The Characters and Place-Names Contained in the Poetical and Dramatic Works of the Poet, Alphabetically Arranged and Described with Synopses of the Poems and Plays
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Introductory Note vii
  • Erratum. *
  • Synopses of the Poems and Plays 1
  • The Tennyson Dictionary 39
  • List of Authorities and of Works Consulted and Quoted 295
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