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William Wordsworth: The Earliest Poems 1785-1790

William Wordsworth

Edited by Duncan Wu

Cover Picture of William Wordsworth: The Earliest Poems 1785-1790
Categories: 18th Century
Imprint: FyfieldBooks
Publisher: Carcanet Press
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  • Many editions of William Wordsworth's mature work are available but general readers have never before had access to the poetry he wrote during his school and university years. This selection from the poetry he composed between 1785 and 1790 reveals a precocious and remarkably accomplished early talent and shows that from the time he began to write he was already preoccupied with precisely the themes that would later be explored more fully in 'The Prelude'. The Earliest Poems offers a unique opportunity to examine the apprenticeship of a great writer.

    Duncan Wu's introduction and his comprehensive notes guide the reader through versions of Wordsworth's work to show how he graduated from the early experimentation of pieces such as 'Beauty and Moonlight' to 'An Evening Walk', an impressive poem of over 600 lines which was published in 1793. This book spans the first five years of Wordsworth's career, revealing how the traumas of his early life forged his vision and produced the sensibility that would make him a most gifted celebrant of the human spirit. In effect, they also chronicle the evolution of British Romanticism out of the aesthetic morass of the late eighteenth century.
    William Wordsworth
    William Wordsworth was born in 1770 in the market-town of Cockermouth, Cumbria, and educated at Hawkshead Grammar School and St John's College, Cambridge. During his twenties he witnessed the French Revolution at first hand and became a staunch republican. His collaboration with Coleridge in 1797-1798 (The annus mirabilis ) produced some ... read more
    Duncan Wu
    DUNCAN WU is Professor of English Literature and a Fellow of St Catherine's College, Oxford. ... read more
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