The Inchcape Rock
"The Inchcape Rock" is a ballad written by English poet Robert Southey. Published in 1802, it tells the story of a 14th-century attempt by the Abbot of Aberbrothok to install a warning bell on Inchcape, a notorious sandstone reef about 11 miles off the east coast of Scotland; the poem tells how the bell was removed by a pirate, who subsequently perished on the reef while returning to Scotland in bad weather some time later. Like many of Southey's ballads "The Inchcape Rock" describes a supernatural event, but its basic theme is that those who do bad things will be punished accordingly and poetic justice done. Southey wrote the poem between 1796 and 1798 for The Morning Post, but it was not published until 1802, his inspiration was the legend of a pirate who removed a bell on Inchcape placed there by the Abbot of Arbroath to warn mariners of the reef. The poem was reprinted in the Edinburgh Annual Register for 1810, published in 1812. In a letter to his maternal uncle Herbert Hill, dated 16 August 1812, Southey tells how "The Inchcape Rock" had "lain uncorrected among my papers for the last ten years", until "some unknown person... thought proper to touch up & transmit for insertion".
The poem is included in the third volume of Southey's The Poetical Works of Robert Southey, volume 3, where it is prefaced by a quotation from John Stoddart's Remarks on Local Scenery and Manners in Scotland, which begins "An old writer mentions a curious tradition that may be worth quoting" before going on to the relate the tale. Southey added a footnote suggesting that his own source may have been a Brief Description of Scotland, written by someone identified only as J. M; the poem consists of 17 quatrains written in rhyming couplets. It begins by describing how the bell installed by the abbot was attached to a buoy, so it only rang when the Inchcape Rock was under water and the buoy was floating; the holy Abbot of Aberbrothok Had placed that bell on the Inchcape Rock. When the Rock was hid by the surge’s swell, The Mariners heard the warning Bell. After its removal Ralph says, "The next who comes to the Rock, Won’t bless the Abbot of Aberbrothok"; some time Ralph's own ship founders on the rock while he is attempting to negotiate his way back to Scotland in bad weather, laden with booty.
In classic 19th-century Romantic style, the ship sinks as Ralph hears the Devil summoning him to Hell by ringing the bell he had removed: Sir Ralph the Rover tore his hair, He curst himself in his despair. But in his dying fear, One dreadful sound could the Rover hear. Many of Southey's ballads describe supernatural events, The Inchcape Rock is no exception. Bernhardt-Kabisch has argued that Southey's supernatural ballads "seemed purposed to objectify Southey's demons and to exorcise them by ridicule"; the poem's basic theme is. In 1851, while discussing a plan to place bells across the country to help lost shepherds, Thomas De Quincey suggested that "The Inchcape Rock" should be used to discourage those who might seek to destroy the warning bells: "And every child might learn to fear a judgment of retribution upon its own steps in case of any such wicked action, by reading the tale of him, who, in order'To plague the Abbot of Aberbrothock,' removed the bell from the Inchcape rock." Writing in 1873 Joseph Devey expressed his view that in this poem "Having small canvas for his picture, Southey at once seizes upon the salient features of the subject, discards the fatal prolixity which mars most of his heavier productions.
The'Maid of the Inn,' the'Well of St. Keyne,' the'Battle of Blenheim,' the'Inchcape Rock,' place Southey at the head of the ballad, while his'Madoc' and his'Roderic' place him nearly at the tail of the epic poets of his country." "The Inchcape Rock" is included in the 10-volume The World's Best Poetry collection edited by Bliss Carman and others, published in 1904. In his 1947 English translation of Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes, J. M. Cohen refers to "The Inchcape Rock" as having a style he wishes to avoid in his rendering of the ballads by Cervantes. There was no warning device on Inchcape Rock in modern times until 1810, when Robert Stevenson and John Rennie completed construction of the Bell Rock Lighthouse, but Southey's poem popularised the legend of the bell
Walter Savage Landor
Walter Savage Landor was an English writer and activist. His best known works were the prose Imaginary Conversations, the poem Rose Aylmer, but the critical acclaim he received from contemporary poets and reviewers was not matched by public popularity; as remarkable as his work was, it was equalled by lively temperament. Both his writing and political activism, such as his support for Lajos Kossuth and Giuseppe Garibaldi, were imbued with his passion for liberal and republican causes, he befriended and influenced the next generation of literary reformers such as Charles Dickens and Robert Browning. In a long and active life of eighty-nine years Landor produced a considerable amount of work in various genres; this can be classified into four main areas—prose, lyric poetry, political writings including epigrams, Latin. His prose and poetry have received most acclaim, but critics are divided in their preference between them and he is now described as'a poet's poet' and author of the greatest short poems in English,'Some of the best poets, Ezra Pound and Robert Frost among them, steered by his lights'.
Landor's prose is best represented by the Imaginary Conversations. He drew on a vast array of historical characters from Greek philosophers to contemporary writers and composed conversations between pairs of characters that covered areas of philosophy, politics and many other topics; these exercises proved a more successful application of Landor's natural ability for writing dialogue than his plays. Although these have many quotable passages the overall effect suffered because he never learned the art of drama. Landor wrote much beautiful poetry; the love poems were inspired by a succession of female romantic ideals – Ione, Rose Aylmer and Rose Paynter. Sensitive are his "domestic" poems about his sister and his children. In the course of his career Landor wrote for various journals on a range of topics that interested him from anti-Pitt politics to the unification of Italy, he was a master of the epigram which he used to good effect and wrote satirically to avenge himself on politicians and other people who upset him.
Landor wrote over three hundred Latin poems, political tracts and essays, but these have been ignored in the collections of his work. Landor found Latin useful for expressing things that might otherwise have been "indecent or unattractive" as he put it and as a cover for libellous material. Fellow classical scholars of the time put Landor's Latin work on a par with his English writing. Landor's biography consists of a catalogue of incidents and misfortunes, many of them self-inflicted but some no fault of his own, his headstrong nature and hot-headed temperament, combined with a complete contempt for authority, landed him in a great deal of trouble over the years. By a succession of bizarre actions, he was successively thrown out of Rugby school, of Oxford and from time to time from the family home. In the course of his life he came into conflict deliberately with his political enemies – the supporters of Pitt – but inadvertently with a succession of Lord Lieutenants, Lord Chancellors, Spanish officers, Italian Grand Dukes, nuncio legatos and other minor officials.
He gained the upper hand, if not with an immediate hilarious response possibly many years with a biting epithet. Landor's writing landed him on the wrong side of the laws of libel, his refuge in Latin proved of no avail in Italy. Many times his friends had to come to his aid in smoothing the ruffled feathers of his opponents or in encouraging him to moderate his behaviour, his friends were active in the desperate attempts to get his work published, where he offended or felt cheated by a succession of publishers who found his work either unsellable or unpublishable. He was involved in legal disputes with his neighbours whether in England or Italy and Dickens' characterisation of him in Bleak House revolves around such a dispute over a gate between Boythorn and Sir Leicester Dedlock. Fate dealt with him unfairly when he tried to put into practice his bold and generous ideas to improve the lot of man, or when he was mistaken at one time for an agent of the Prince of Wales and at another for a tramp.
His stormy marriage with his long-suffering wife resulted in a long separation, when she had taken him back in a series of sad attempts to escape. And yet Landor was described by Swinburne as "the kindest and gentlest of men", he collected a coterie of friends who went to great lengths to help him and writing for the Encyclopædia Britannica Swinburne comments that “his loyalty and liberality of heart were as inexhaustible as his bounty and beneficence of hand", adding that "praise and encouragement, deserved or undeserved, came more to his lips than challenge or defiance". The numerous accounts of those with whom he came in contact reveal that he was fascinating company and he dined out on his wit and knowledge for a great part of his life. Landor's powerful sense of humour, expressed in his tremendous and famous laughs no doubt contributed to and yet helped assuage the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. "His passionate compassion, his bitter and burning pity for all wrongs endured in all the world, found outlet in his lifelong defence of tyrannicide.
His tender and ardent love of children, of animals and of flowers makes fragrant alike the pages of his writing and the records of his life". Walter Savage Landor was born in Warwick, the eldest son of Dr Walter Landor, a physician, his second wife, Elizabeth Savage, his birthplace, Eastgate House, is now occupied by The King's High School For Girls. His father inherited estates at Rugeley, Staf
William Wordsworth was a major English Romantic poet who, with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, helped to launch the Romantic Age in English literature with their joint publication Lyrical Ballads. Wordsworth's magnum opus is considered to be The Prelude, a semi-autobiographical poem of his early years that he revised and expanded a number of times, it was posthumously titled and published, before which it was known as "the poem to Coleridge". Wordsworth was Britain's poet laureate from 1843 until his death from pleurisy on 23 April 1850; the second of five children born to John Wordsworth and Ann Cookson, William Wordsworth was born on 7 April 1770 in what is now named Wordsworth House in Cockermouth, part of the scenic region in northwestern England known as the Lake District. William's sister, the poet and diarist Dorothy Wordsworth, to whom he was close all his life, was born the following year, the two were baptised together, they had three other siblings: the eldest, who became a lawyer. Wordsworth's father was a legal representative of James Lowther, 1st Earl of Lonsdale and, through his connections, lived in a large mansion in the small town.
He was away from home on business, so the young William and his siblings had little involvement with him and remained distant from him until his death in 1783. However, he did encourage William in his reading, in particular set him to commit large portions of verse to memory, including works by Milton and Spenser. William was allowed to use his father's library. William spent time at his mother's parents' house in Penrith, where he was exposed to the moors, but did not get along with his grandparents or his uncle, who lived there, his hostile interactions with them distressed him to the point of contemplating suicide. Wordsworth was taught to read by his mother and attended, first, a tiny school of low quality in Cockermouth a school in Penrith for the children of upper-class families, where he was taught by Ann Birkett, who insisted on instilling in her students traditions that included pursuing both scholarly and local activities the festivals around Easter, May Day and Shrove Tuesday. Wordsworth was taught the Spectator, but little else.
It was at the school in Penrith that he met the Hutchinsons, including Mary, who became his wife. After the death of Wordsworth's mother, in 1778, his father sent him to Hawkshead Grammar School in Lancashire and sent Dorothy to live with relatives in Yorkshire, she and William did not meet again for another nine years. Wordsworth made his debut as a writer in 1787; that same year he began attending Cambridge. He received his BA degree in 1791, he returned to Hawkshead for the first two summers of his time at Cambridge, spent holidays on walking tours, visiting places famous for the beauty of their landscape. In 1790 he went on a walking tour of Europe, during which he toured the Alps extensively, visited nearby areas of France and Italy. In November 1791, Wordsworth visited Revolutionary France and became enchanted with the Republican movement, he fell in love with a French woman, Annette Vallon, who in 1792 gave birth to their daughter Caroline. Financial problems and Britain's tense relations with France forced him to return to England alone the following year.
The circumstances of his return and his subsequent behaviour raised doubts as to his declared wish to marry Annette, but he supported her and his daughter as best he could in life. The Reign of Terror left Wordsworth disillusioned with the French Revolution and the outbreak of armed hostilities between Britain and France prevented him from seeing Annette and his daughter for some years. With the Peace of Amiens again allowing travel to France, in 1802 Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy visited Annette and Caroline in Calais; the purpose of the visit was to prepare Annette for the fact of his forthcoming marriage to Mary Hutchinson. Afterwards he wrote the sonnet "It is a beauteous evening and free," recalling a seaside walk with the 9-year-old Caroline, whom he had never seen before that visit. Mary was anxious. Upon Caroline's marriage, in 1816, Wordsworth settled £30 a year on her, payments which continued until 1835, when they were replaced by a capital settlement; the year 1793 saw the first publication of poems by Wordsworth, in the collections An Evening Walk and Descriptive Sketches.
In 1795 he received a legacy of 900 pounds from Raisley Calvert and became able to pursue a career as a poet. It was in 1795 that he met Samuel Taylor Coleridge in Somerset; the two poets developed a close friendship. In 1797, Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy moved to Alfoxton House, just a few miles away from Coleridge's home in Nether Stowey. Together Wordsworth and Coleridge produced Lyrical Ballads, an important work in the English Romantic movement; the volume gave Coleridge's name as author. One of Wordsworth's most famous poems, "Tintern Abbey", was published in this collection, along with Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"; the second edition, published in 1800, had only Wordsworth listed as the author, included a preface to the poems. It was augmented in the next edition, pub
Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Samuel Taylor Coleridge was an English poet, literary critic and theologian who, with his friend William Wordsworth, was a founder of the Romantic Movement in England and a member of the Lake Poets. He wrote the poems The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Kubla Khan, as well as the major prose work Biographia Literaria, his critical work on William Shakespeare, was influential, he helped introduce German idealist philosophy to English-speaking culture. Coleridge coined many familiar phrases, including suspension of disbelief, he had a major influence on American transcendentalism. Throughout his adult life Coleridge had crippling bouts of depression, he was physically unhealthy, which may have stemmed from a bout of rheumatic fever and other childhood illnesses. He was treated for these conditions with laudanum. Coleridge was born on 21 October 1772 in the town of Ottery St Mary in England. Samuel's father was the Reverend John Coleridge, the well-respected vicar of St Mary's Church, Ottery St Mary and was headmaster of the King's School, a free grammar school established by King Henry VIII in the town.
He had been master of Hugh Squier's School in South Molton and lecturer of nearby Molland. John Coleridge had three children by his first wife. Samuel was the youngest of ten by the Reverend Mr. Coleridge's second wife, Anne Bowden the daughter of John Bowden, Mayor of South Molton, Devon, in 1726. Coleridge suggests that he "took no pleasure in boyish sports" but instead read "incessantly" and played by himself. After John Coleridge died in 1781, 8-year-old Samuel was sent to Christ's Hospital, a charity school, founded in the 16th century in Greyfriars, where he remained throughout his childhood and writing poetry. At that school Coleridge became friends with Charles Lamb, a schoolmate, studied the works of Virgil and William Lisle Bowles. In one of a series of autobiographical letters written to Thomas Poole, Coleridge wrote: "At six years old I remember to have read Belisarius, Robinson Crusoe, Philip Quarll – and I found the Arabian Nights' Entertainments – one tale of which made so deep an impression on me that I was haunted by spectres whenever I was in the dark – and I distinctly remember the anxious and fearful eagerness with which I used to watch the window in which the books lay – and whenever the sun lay upon them, I would seize it, carry it by the wall, bask, read."
However, Coleridge seems to have appreciated his teacher, as he wrote in recollections of his school days in Biographia Literaria: I enjoyed the inestimable advantage of a sensible, though at the same time, a severe master At the same time that we were studying the Greek Tragic Poets, he made us read Shakespeare and Milton as lessons: and they were the lessons too, which required most time and trouble to bring up, so as to escape his censure. I learnt from him, that Poetry that of the loftiest, that of the wildest odes, had a logic of its own, as severe as that of science. In our own English compositions he showed no mercy to phrase, metaphor, or image, unsupported by a sound sense, or where the same sense might have been conveyed with equal force and dignity in plainer words... In fancy I can hear him now, exclaiming Harp? Harp? Lyre? Pen and ink, you mean! Muse, Muse? Your Nurse's daughter, you mean! Pierian spring? Oh aye! the cloister-pump, I suppose! Be this as it may, there was one custom of our master's, which I cannot pass over in silence, because I think it... worthy of imitation.
He would permit our theme exercises... to accumulate, till each lad had four or five to be looked over. Placing the whole number abreast on his desk, he would ask the writer, why this or that sentence might not have found as appropriate a place under this or that other thesis: and if no satisfying answer could be returned, two faults of the same kind were found in one exercise, the irrevocable verdict followed, the exercise was torn up, another on the same subject to be produced, in addition to the tasks of the day, he wrote of his loneliness at school in the poem Frost at Midnight: "With unclosed lids had I dreamt/Of my sweet birthplace." From 1791 until 1794, Coleridge attended Cambridge. In 1792, he won the Browne Gold Medal for an ode. In December 1793, he left the college and enlisted in the 15th Light Dragoons using the false name "Silas Tomkyn Comberbache" because of debt or because the girl that he loved, Mary Evans, had rejected him, his brothers arranged for his discharge a few months under the reason of "insanity" and he was readmitted to Jesus College, though he would never receive a degree from the university.
At Jesus College, Coleridge was introduced to political and theological ideas considered radical, including those of the poet Robert Southey. Coleridge joined Southey in a plan, soon abandoned, to found a utopian commune-like society, called Pantisocracy, in the wilderness of Pennsylvania. In 1795, the two friends married sisters Sara and Edith Fricker, in St Mary Redcliffe, but Coleridge's marriage with Sara proved unhappy, he grew to detest his wi
A nursery rhyme is a traditional poem or song for children in Britain and many other countries, but usage of the term only dates from the late 18th/early 19th century. The term Mother Goose rhymes is interchangeable with nursery rhymes. From the mid-16th century nursery rhymes begin to be recorded in English plays, most popular rhymes date from the 17th and 18th centuries; the first English collections, Tommy Thumb's Song Book and a sequel, Tommy Thumb's Pretty Song Book, were published before 1744. Publisher John Newbery's stepson, Thomas Carnan, was the first to use the term Mother Goose for nursery rhymes when he published a compilation of English rhymes, Mother Goose's Melody, or, Sonnets for the Cradle; the oldest children's songs of which we have records are lullabies, intended to help a child fall asleep. Lullabies can be found in every human culture; the English term lullaby is thought to come from "lu, lu" or "la la" sounds made by mothers or nurses to calm children, "by by" or "bye bye", either another lulling sound or a term for good night.
Until the modern era lullabies were only recorded incidentally in written sources. The Roman nurses' lullaby, "Lalla, Lalla, aut dormi, aut lacta", is recorded in a scholium on Persius and may be the oldest to survive. Many medieval English verses associated with the birth of Jesus take the form of a lullaby, including "Lullay, my liking, my dere son, my sweting" and may be versions of contemporary lullabies. However, most of those used today date from the 17th century. For example, a well known lullaby such as "Rock-a-bye, baby on a tree top", cannot be found in records until the late-18th century when it was printed by John Newbery. A French poem, similar to "Thirty days hath September", numbering the days of the month, was recorded in the 13th century. From the Middle Ages there are records of short children's rhyming songs as marginalia. From the mid-16th century they begin to be recorded in English plays. "Pat-a-cake, pat-a-cake, baker's man" is one of the oldest surviving English nursery rhymes.
The earliest recorded version of the rhyme appears in Thomas d'Urfey's play The Campaigners from 1698. Most nursery rhymes were not written down until the 18th century, when the publishing of children's books began to move from polemic and education towards entertainment, but there is evidence for many rhymes existing before this, including "To market, to market" and "Cock a doodle doo", which date from at least the late 16th century; the first English collections, Tommy Thumb's Song Book and a sequel, Tommy Thumb's Pretty Song Book, are both thought to have been published by Mary Cooper in London before 1744, with such songs becoming known as'Tommy Thumb's songs'. John Newbery's stepson, Thomas Carnan, was the first to use the term Mother Goose for nursery rhymes when he published a compilation of English rhymes, Mother Goose's Melody, or, Sonnets for the Cradle; these rhymes seem to have come from a variety of sources, including traditional riddles, ballads, lines of Mummers' plays, drinking songs, historical events, and, it has been suggested, ancient pagan rituals.
About half of the recognised "traditional" English rhymes were known by the mid-18th century. In the early 19th century printed collections of rhymes began to spread to other countries, including Robert Chambers's Popular Rhymes of Scotland and in the United States, Mother Goose's Melodies. From this period we sometimes know the origins and authors of rhymes—for instance, in "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" which combines the melody of an 18th-century French tune "Ah vous dirai-je, Maman" with a 19th-century English poem by Jane Taylor entitled "The Star" used as lyrics. Early folk song collectors often collected nursery rhymes, including in Scotland Sir Walter Scott and in Germany Clemens Brentano and Achim von Arnim in Des Knaben Wunderhorn; the first, the most important academic collection to focus in this area was James Orchard Halliwell's The Nursery Rhymes of England and Popular Rhymes and Tales in 1849, in which he divided rhymes into antiquities, fireside stories, game-rhymes, alphabet-rhymes, nature-rhymes and families, superstitions and nursery songs.
By the time of Sabine Baring-Gould's A Book of Nursery Songs, folklore was an academic study, full of comments and footnotes. A professional anthropologist, Andrew Lang produced The Nursery Rhyme Book in 1897; the early years of the 20th century are notable for the illustrations to children's books including Caldecott's Hey Diddle Diddle Picture Book and Arthur Rackham's Mother Goose. The definitive study of English rhymes remains the work of Peter Opie. Many nursery rhymes have been argued to have hidden origins. John Bellenden Ker, for example, wrote four volumes arguing that English nursery rhymes were written in'Low Saxon', a hypothetical early form of Dutch, he then'translated' them back into English, revealing in particular a strong tendency to anti-clericalism. Many of the ideas about the links between rhymes and historical persons, or events, can be traced back to Katherine Elwes's book The Real Personages of Mother Goose, in which she linked famous nursery-rhyme characters with real people, on little or no evidence.
She assumed that children's songs were a peculiar form of coded historical narrative, propaganda or covert protest, considered that they could have been written for entertainment. There have been several attempts, across the world. In the late 18th century we can sometimes see how rhymes like "Little Rob
Thalaba the Destroyer
Thalaba the Destroyer is an 1801 epic poem composed by Robert Southey. The origins of the poem can be traced to Southey's school boy days, but he did not begin to write the poem until he finished composing Madoc at the age of 25. Thalaba the Destroyer was completed; when the poem was published by the publisher Longman, it suffered from poor sales and only half of the copies were sold by 1804. The poem is divided into twelve "books" with irregular stanza structures and unrhymed lines of poetry; the story describes how a group of sorcerers work to destroy the Hodeirah family in an attempt to prevent a prophecy of their future doom from coming true. However, a young child named. After one of the sorcerers hunts down Thalaba to kill him, the sorcerer is defeated by a great storm and his powerful magical ring comes into Thalaba's possession. With the ring, Thalaba travels across the Middle East to find a way to defeat the evil sorcerers. In the end, Thalaba is able to stay true to Allah and is guided by the prophet Mohammad in destroying the sorcerers.
Southey uses the poem to describe various superstitions and myths, with a heavy reliance on repetition of various themes that link the myths together. Although based in Islamic theology, most of the action is mechanical instead of emphasising possible moral truths that can be drawn from the plot. Though the main character is purported to be a Muslim, the story takes place thousands of years before Islam, in ancient Babylon. Critics gave the work mixed reviews, with some emphasising the strong morality within the work or the quality of the poetry. However, other critics felt that the lack of a strong lyrical structure and the use of Middle Eastern myths detracted from the poem; the basis for Southey wishing to write long poems came from his private reading of literature while attending Westminster School as a boy. In Summer 1799, Southey began working on Thalaba, he started to work with Coleridge, both Coleridge's "Kubla Khan" and Thalaba shared many sources. He travelled to Burton where he continued to write the poem, which he called a romance at the time.
He soon after travelled to Portugal in April 1800 where he planned to finish Thalaba and send it back to England for publication. By July, he was able to complete the poem and in October the poem was edited and ready for publication. John Rickman served as Southey's agent in selling the book. Although finished, Southey continued to work on fixing the end of the poem until January 1801 after receiving suggestions from his friends. After Portugal went to war with France and Spain, Southey left the country and he returned to England in June 1801; the poem was published in 1801 by Longman with 1,000 copies, but only sold half by 1804. A revised edition was published in 1809; the poem is a twelve-book work with irregular lines that are not rhymed. The poem deals with a group of sorcerers at Domdaniel that live under the sea, it was foretold that a Muslim, would be God's champion and conquer the sorcerers. To pre-empt the prophecy, the sorcerers kill the Hodeirah family. Unknown to them, Thalaba was able to escape from harm with his mother Zeinab.
They arrive at Irem, a ruined city. After Zeinab dies, Thalaba is raised by a leader of Irem named Moath; the sorcerers find out that Thalaba is still alive, Abdaldar, one of their members, goes to find out Thalaba's location. When Abdaldar arrives, he is stopped a simoom, a sand storm, his magic ring is lost. Thalaba finds the ring. A demon comes to steal the ring from Thalaba; this allows why his family was killed. Time passes and Thalaba settles into a pastoral life at Irem and plans to marry Moath's daughter, Oneiza. However, Thalaba decides that his duty prohibits him from such actions, he leaves to fulfill his destiny. However, the sorcerer Lobaba tricks tries to steal the ring. After many failed attempts, Lobaba tries to convince Thalaba to harness the ring's magic power, which would bring Thalaba harm. Instead, Thalaba realises that Lobaba is evil. Although Thalaba attempts to kill Lobaba and fails by the sorcerer's magic, a storm comes and destroys the sorcerer. Thalaba travels past Baghdad onto the ruins of Babylon to find Haruth and Maruth, two angels that know about magic.
While searching for them, he runs across an evil warrior. Mohareb offers to take Thalaba through the city and they travel through the cave of Zohak. Zohak, an individual punished to have snakes eat at his brain, tries to stop them before Mohareb distracts him; the two continue to travel into the dwelling of Haruth and Maruth and, when Mohareb finds out that Thalaba is not evil, attacks him. However, the ring protects Thalaba. After Mohareb claims that magic was the only reason why Thalaba lives, Thalaba decides to get rid of the ring into a pit before the two resume fighting. Soon after, Mohareb is thrown into the pit and Thalaba is able to ask the angels what he needs to defeat his enemies, he is told "faith". Thalaba travels to the land of Aloadin, who owns a great garden paradise, he is invited to feast with the people, but he is unwilling to imbibe alcohol or be taken in by the dancing women that seek to entice him; the temptations overwhelm him to the point where he can no longer tolerate them and he flees.
Shortly after leaving, he discovers one of the women being attacked by a man wanting to have his way with her. It is revealed that the woman was Oneiza, captured, that Aloadin was a sorcerer. After saving Oneiza, Thalaba is determined
The Fall of Robespierre
The Fall of Robespierre is a three-act play written by Robert Southey and Samuel Coleridge in 1794. It follows the events in France after the downfall of Maximilien Robespierre. Robespierre is portrayed as a tyrant, but Southey's contributions praise him as a destroyer of despotism; the play does not operate as an effective drama for the stage, but rather as a sort of dramatic poem with each act being a different scene. According to Coleridge, "my sole aim to imitate the impassioned and figurative language of the French Orators and develop the characters of the chief actors on a vast stage of horrors." To raise money and Coleridge began to work together in August 1794. According to Southey the project began in "sportive conversation" at the house of their friend Robert Lovell; the three intended to collaborate on a play that would deal with the beheading of Robespierre in July 1794. Their source was news articles that described the final moments of a dispute within the National Assembly. During composition, they were able to write 800 lines in just two days.
The play was divided between the three collaborators, with Coleridge composing the first act, Southey composing the second act and Lovell the third. Southey and Lovell completed their acts but Coleridge had only finished part of his the following evening. Southey felt" and so rewrote the third act himself. Coleridge completed his act; when they turned to Joseph Cottle to publish the work, he refused and Coleridge had to search for another publisher. He took the manuscript to Cambridge and improving his own contribution; the work was published in October 1794 by Benjamin Flower. Five hundred copies were printed and circulated in Bath and London, which brought the writers fame while their personal relationship grew tense; the events that inspired the work involve Robespierre's taking over of the National Assembly and removing the moderate members. During this time, he allowed the executions of many individuals and became the center of power during the summer of 1793; the next summer, 28 July 1794, he was executed by guillotine along with 21 others.
The play is filled with various speeches on the topic of liberty. The first scene is set in the Tuileries, in which Bertrand Barère, Jean-Lambert Tallien and Louis Legendre, opponents of Robespierre discuss their plans to challenge the "tyrant", their conversation comprises rhetorical speeches as if they were part of a public meeting. The peaceful virtues And every blandishment of private life, The father's cares, the mother's fond endearment, All sacrificed to liberty's wild riot; the third act written by Lovell, was rewritten by Southey. Within the act, the opponents of Robespierre compare themselves to the assassins of Julius Caesar who are restoring the republic. In the final speech, Bertrand Barère discusses the history French Revolution and lists the various would-be despots who have attempted to usurp liberty for Louis XVI to Robespierre himself, concluding that France will be a beacon of liberation to the world. Never, Shall this regenerated country wear The despot yoke. Though myriads round assail And with worse fury urge this new crusade Than savages have known.
— She shall wield The thunder-bolt of vengeance – She shall blast The despot's pride, liberate the world. Act one reflects Coleridge's feelings about those Robespierre executed, including Madame Roland and Brissot; the tone of the piece is not revolutionary, but it does include themes connected to his other works and reveals Coleridge's thoughts on marriage and childhood. It incorporates Coleridge's view that individuals are innocent in a manner similar to Rousseau's belief; this idea, combined with a belief in achieving some sort of paradise, was developed in the works following the play. The play as a whole deals with many Shakespearean themes and emphasises the precedents of both Brutus and Mark Antony throughout. Southey's third act captures his feelings on the French Revolution and incorporates his radical views; the act contains his feelings on despotism and liberty. An anonymous review in the November 1794 Critical Review argued that the subject matter would have been appropriate for a tragedy but the events happened too soon to allow for it to be dealt with in an appropriate manner.
The reviewer commented on the haste of the work and that it "must, not be supposed to smell strongly of the lamp. However, the review does praise aspects of the poem, as the author writes, "By these free remarks, we mean not to under-rate Mr. Coleridge's historical drama, it affords ample testimony, that the writer is a genuine votary of the Muse, several parts of it will afford much pleasure to those who can relish the beauties of poetry. Indeed a writer who could produce so much beauty in so little time, must possess powers that are capable of raising him to a distinguished place among the English poets." In the British Critic, an anonymous reviewer argued in 1795 that "The sentiments... in many instances are though boldly conceived, expressed in language, which gives us reason to think the Author might, after some probation, become no unsuccessful wooer of the tragic muse." Ashton, Rosemary. The Life of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Oxford: Blackwell, 1997. Holmes, Richard. Coleridge. New York: Pantheon Books, 1989.
Madden, Lionel. Robert Southey: The Critical Heritage. London: Routledge and Keegan Paul, 1972. Speck, W. A. Robert Southey. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006. Online text of The Fall of Robespierre