So with an equal splendor, Another notable illuminated edition had been created in 1846 by Owen Jones in a legible blackletter script with one decorative initial per page. Dost in these notes their artless tale relate, When they laurel the graves of our dead! When.  The revised version of 1768 was that later printed. This is stated as pathetic, but the reader is put into a mood in which one would not try to alter it ... By comparing the social arrangement to Nature he makes it seem inevitable, which it was not, and gives it a dignity which was undeserved. Brushing with hasty steps the dews away, , A kinship between Gray's Elegy and Oliver Goldsmith's The Deserted Village has been recognised, although the latter was more openly political in its treatment of the rural poor and used heroic couplets, where the elegist poets kept to cross-rhymed quatrains. The Ode is a beautifully sad poem that yet manages to be delightfully comical through its use of language: It has some of the qualities of mock epic poetry in which the trivial is elevated to the near-grand.  The later version of the poem keeps the stoic resignation regarding death, for the narrator still accepts death. " Regarding the status of the poem, Graham Hough in 1953 explained, "no one has ever doubted, but many have been hard put to it to explain in what its greatness consists. And leaves the world to darkness and to me. The earlier version lacks many of the later version's English aspects, especially as Gray replaced many classical figures with English ones: Cato the Younger by Hampden, Tully by Milton, and Julius Caesar by Cromwell..  He similarly ignored Gray's suggestion in the same letter, referring back to his own alternative versions in earlier drafts of his poem: “Might not the English characters here be romanized? Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn, Gray. Produced by chromolithography, each of its 35 pages was individually designed with two half stanzas in a box surrounded by coloured foliar and floral borders. " Adam Smith, in his 21st lecture on rhetoric in 1763, argued that poetry should deal with "A temper of mind that differs very little from the common tranquillity of mind is what we can best enter into, by the perusal of a small piece of a small length ... an Ode or Elegy in which there is no odds but in the measure which differ little from the common state of mind are what most please us. As such, it falls within an old poetic tradition of poets contemplating their legacy. " Later, Robert Mack, in 2000, explained that "Gray's Elegy is numbered high among the very greatest poems in the English tradition precisely because of its simultaneous accessibility and inscrutability.  But as compared to a poem recording personal loss such as John Milton's "Lycidas", it lacks many of the ornamental aspects found in that poem. Garrison ch.4, “Gray’s language and the languages of translation”, p.153ff.  The pattern of including translations and imitations together continued into the 19th century with an 1806 bilingual edition in which a translation into French verse, signed simply L.D., appeared facing the English original page by page. , The version that was later published and reprinted was a 32-stanza version with the "Epitaph" conclusion. But it is also, and more importantly, that in its essentials Gray's Elegy touches this tradition at many points, and consideration of them is of interest to both to appreciation of the poem and to seeing how [...] they become in the later tradition essential points of reference. ["], The poem concludes with a description of the poet's grave, over which the speaker is meditating, together with a description of the end of the poet's life:, "There at the foot of yonder nodding beech, The poem's composition could also have been prompted by the entrance of Prince William, Duke of Cumberland into London or by a trial of Jacobite nobility in 1746.  Unlike Gray, Browning adds a female figure and argues that nothing but love matters. The only other letter to discuss the poem was one sent to Wharton on 11 September 1746, which alludes to the poem being worked on. Mutt'ring his wayward fancies he would rove; " She continued by praising the poem: "Gray's power as a poet derives largely from his ability to convey the inevitability and inexorability of conflict, conflict by its nature unresolvable. He claimed that the poem "as the context makes clear", means that "18th-century England had no scholarship system of carriere ouverte aux talents. The reason for this extraordinary unanimity of praise are as varied as the ways in which poetry can appeal.  In 1793 there was an Italian edition of Giuseppe Torelli's translation in rhymed quatrains which had first appeared in 1776. Immediately, he included the poem in a letter he sent to Walpole, that said:, As I live in a place where even the ordinary tattle of the town arrives not till it is stale, and which produces no events of its own, you will not desire any excuse from me for writing so seldom, especially as of all people living I know you are the least a friend to letters spun out of one's own brains, with all the toil and constraint that accompanies sentimental productions. Now drooping, woeful-wan, like one forlorn,  It was so popular that it was reprinted twelve times and reproduced in many different periodicals until 1765, including in Gray's Six Poems (1753), in his Odes (1757), and in Volume IV of Dodsley's 1755 compilation of poetry. To wander in the gloomy walks of fate: Some village Hampden, that, with dauntless breast, ", The two did not resolve their disagreement, but Walpole did concede the matter, possibly to keep the letters between them polite. Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard. These in the robings of glory, ", Johnson's general criticism prompted many others to join in the debate.  In 1809, H. P. Houghton wrote An evening's contemplation in a French prison, being a humble imitation of Gray's Elegy while he was a prisoner at Arras during the Napoleonic wars (London 1809).  Although the comparison between obscurity and renown is commonly seen as universal and not within a specific context with a specific political message, there are political ramifications for Gray's choices.  This included four translations into Latin, of which one was Christopher Anstey's and another was Costa's; eight into Italian, where versions in prose and terza rima accompanied those already mentioned by Torelli and Cesarotti; two in French, two in German and one each in Greek and Hebrew. Gibson, John, with Peter Wilkinson, and Stephen Freeth (eds), This page was last edited on 22 October 2020, at 18:15. The grey rock and the windy light?  At the period there were guides for the dramatic performance of such pieces involving expressive hand gestures, and they included directions for this piece. Gray does not want to round his poem off neatly, because death is an experience of which we cannot be certain, but also because the logic of his syntax demands continuity rather than completion. Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere, Written in a Country Meeting House, April 1789; Parodized from Gray for the Entertainment of Those Who Laugh at All Parties by George Richards (d.1804) and published from Boston MA, the parody was printed opposite Gray's original page by page, making the translation to the political context more obvious. The speaker emphasises both aural and visual sensations as he examines the area in relation to himself:, The curfew tolls the knell of parting day, After analyzing the language of the poem, W. Hutchings declared in 1984, "The epitaph, then, is still making us think, still disturbing us, even as it uses the language of conventional Christianity and conventional epitaphs. He also provided a final note explaining that the poem was written "to make it appear a day scene, and as such to contrast it with the twilight scene of my excellent Friend's Elegy".  Profiting by its success, Jerningham followed it up in successive years with other poems on the theme of nuns, in which the connection with Gray's work, though less close, was maintained in theme, form and emotional tone: The Magdalens: An Elegy (1763); The Nun: an elegy (1764); and “An Elegy Written Among the Ruins of an Abbey” (1765), which is derivative of the earlier poems on ruins by Moore and Cunningham. Along the heath, and near his fav'rite tree; Later critics tended to comment on its language and universal aspects, but some felt the ending was unconvincing—failing to resolve the questions the poem raised—or that the poem did not do enough to present a political statement that would serve to help the obscure rustic poor who form its central image. With Walpole's help, he was able to convince Robert Dodsley to print the poem on 15 February as a quarto pamphlet. Before the final version was published, it was circulated in London society by Walpole, who ensured that it would be a popular topic of discussion throughout 1750. The cooling drip of the rain: It may be that there never was; it may be that in the obscure graveyard lie those who but for circumstance would have been as famous as Milton and Hampden. A youth, to fortune and to fame unknown: The first version of the elegy is among the few early poems composed by Gray in English, including "Sonnet on the Death of Richard West", his "Eton Ode", and his "Ode to Adversity". With the exception of certain works of Byron and Shakespeare, no English poem has been so widely admired and imitated abroad and after more than a century of existence we find it as fresh as ever, when its copies, even the most popular of all those of Lamartine, are faded and tarnished.
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