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A Summer Evening's Meditation

Publication Date: May 7, 2013

Chapter: English Literature During The Romantic Period

So, I've gotten REALLY off-mission lately. It's been over SIX MONTHS since we've last checked on the Norton Anthology of English literature, and I'm actually sort of ashamed that I left it in the dust for so long. As such, we're BACK to the kind of material Lit Brick was founded upon: English obscurities lost within 3000 page tomes that you buy in college but never actually read. The time has come, my friends, to meet the Romantics.

Barbauld was actually pretty awesome, both as a writer and a person. Her remarkably progressive father had her reading by the age of three, and this liberal attitude led to her railing against slavery and other injustices as she reached adulthood. Today's poem, in particular, is a beautifully written examination of the universe beyond our own planet. Barbauld's soul flies past the solar system and into the vast unknown, past ten thousand stars and the chaotic galaxies beyond. While featuring references to God creating everything, it's still a remarkably scientific look beyond the Earth considering the era in which it was written. Few poets wrote about the world outside of their own country, let alone their own solar system.

Author: Anna Letitia Barbauld • Year: 1773 • Source: Romantic Circles

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