Read e-book online Dante and the Romantics PDF

By Antonella Braida

ISBN-10: 0230508499

ISBN-13: 9780230508491

ISBN-10: 1403932336

ISBN-13: 9781403932334

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Additional info for Dante and the Romantics

Example text

My focus is on The Vision as a ‘hypertext’ at the same time replacing and incorporating the Divine Comedy. The first important stylistic aspect of The Vision is the use of blank verse, often qualified as Miltonic by contemporaries and by later critics. As has been shown, earlier translations of the Divine Comedy are characterised by a variety of verse forms. 78 Cowper’s translation of Homer is certainly the most obvious example that directed Cary towards the choice of blank verse. 80 Cowper does not intend to recreate the cadence of the Greek language, but to produce a translation in conformity to the English norms or expectations for epic poetry.

The scheme did not go further, but by 1787 both Cary and Lister had begun to write and translate poetry. Cary’s first poems were published in the Gentleman’s Magazine in 1787. ’, the abbreviated form of his nom de plume, ‘Marcellus’. 31 The ode was occasioned by the return to England of the defender of Gibraltar. 33 The volume includes thirty-eight sonnets and three odes: they show Cary’s debt to Seward’s style in their heavy use of poetic diction and personifications. The correspondence with Seward is interesting in facilitating an understanding of the evolution of Cary’s aesthetics.

In the preface to the translation he instead introduces a distinction between Dante and the English poet: His [Dante’s] solicitude, it is true, to define all his images in such a manner as to bring them distinctly within the circle of our vision, and to subject them to the power of the pencil, sometimes renders him little better than grotesque, where Milton has since taught us to expect sublimity. 72 These could seem difficult to accommodate in the light of the English approach to the epic and especially by comparison with Paradise Lost.

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Dante and the Romantics by Antonella Braida

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