Romantic Period – The Forerunner
To say the Romantic era of English literature is to say art -- that is creativity, expressed by every means available to the arts. (GREETINGS) From the very beginning of the Romantic period, poets, either through conscious or unconscious effort, have created many profuse uses of creative references in the content of the individual pieces. William Blake, in particular, though struggling and being unknown for the bulk of his life, composed the most creative work in which his art is full of the mystical approach of religion and the sympathy to the ruin of innocence. Predating his time, he is considered to be one of the earliest typical Romantic poets at the beginning of the period. In the British Isles, Romanticism brought in a rush of fresh, visionary poetry, inspired by the mood which pervades much of Western life during the past two centuries. It’s a temperament which responds to emotion and mystery rather than reason and charity. It’s the temperament which listens more intently to the individual conscience than to the demands of society, and prefers rebellion to acceptance. Since then, the word Romantic came to mean a new, often revolutionary outlook, emphasizing the inspiration of the artist, innovation in ideas and the arts, the feeling of new beginnings and the importance of personal emotions. William Blake was such a creative poet who was well ahead of his time, predating the high point of the English Romanticism by several decades. Living in the dawn of Romanticism, Blake built up a sort of personal mythology of creation and imagination. The Old and New Testaments were his source material, but his own sensibilities transfigured the Biblical stories and led to something entirely original. He was not recognised by his time, but his self-published, mythological illustrated poetry collections contributed a great deal to the romantic period. Here is ‘the Sick Rose’ by Blake, a short poem in one of his earliest collections,...
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