Romantic Parodies, 1797-1831
David A. Kent, D. R. Ewen
Fairleigh Dickinson Univ Press, 1992 - Literary Criticism - 409 pages
This is the first collection of literary parodies, both poetry and prose, written during the English Romantic period. Many anthologies of literary parody have been published during the past century, but no previous selection has concentrated so intensively on a single period in English literary history, and no period in that history was more remarkable for the quantity and diversity of its parody. There was no Romantic writer untouched by parody, either as subject or as author, or even occasionally as both.
Most parodies were intended to discredit the Romantics not only as poets but as individuals, and to disarm the threat they were seen as posing to establish literary and social norms. Because it focuses on the "swarm of imitative writers" about whom Robert Southey complained in an 1819 letter to Walter Savage Landor, this collection throws light on a large and often overlooked body of work whose authors had much more serious purposes than mere ridicule or amusement.
Romantic parody situates itself between the eighteenth-century craft of burlesque and the nonsense verse that Victorian parody often became. This anthology demonstrates that parody is concerned with power: that it expresses ideological conflict, dramatizing clashes of ideas, styles, and values between different generations of writers, different classes and social groups, and even between writers of the same generation and class. Parody is not an inherently conservative mode; politically, it serves the whole range of opinion from extreme left to extreme right.
While several of the parodies are playful - a few even affectionate - most angrily testify to the political, social, and aesthetic divisions embittering the times. Some parodies have aged more gracefully than others. But all contribute to a more vivid understanding of the era and to the reception accorded the most important Romantic writers. The venom and alarm of the response those writers provoked may surprise anyone who takes it for granted that the Romantics easily made their way into the mainstream of English literature.
This volume reprints parodies by the major Romantics (including Coleridge, Keats, Byron, and Shelley) as well as by minor, obscure, and anonymous contemporaries. Several longer, better-known texts are given in their entirety, e.g., Peter Bell, Peter Bell III, and The Vision of Judgment, and there are also examples from distinguished collections such as Rejected Addresses, The Poetic Mirror, and Warreniana. Numerous shorter works are taken from periodicals of the time (such as Blackwood's or The Satirist), and many of these are reprinted for the first time since their initial publication.
The foreword by Linda Hutcheon, "Parody and Romantic Ideology," examines the theoretical implications of Romantic parodies. The introduction, headnotes, and annotations by the editors place the parodies in their historical, social, and literary contexts.
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Peter Bayley The Fishermans Wife 1803
Edward Copleston LAllegro A Poem 1807
John Hamilton Reynolds The Dead Asses 1819
Percy Bysshe Shelley Peter Bell The Third 1819
William Maginn Don Juan Unread 1819
29 David Carey The Water Melon 1820
William Maginn and Others from Luctus on the Death of Sir Daniel Donnelly Late Champion of Ireland 1820
Anonymous The NoseDrop A Physiological Ballad 1821
William Hone A New Vision 1821
Eyre Evans Crowe Characters of Living Authors By Themselves 1821
George Manners The Bards of the Lake 1809
Anonymous Lines originally intended to have been inserted in the last Edition of Wordsworths Poems 1811
Anonymous Review Extraordinary 1812
James and Horace Smith from Rejected Addresses 1812
Francis Hodgson from Leaves of Laurel 1813
Eaton Stannard Barrett from The Heroine or Adventures of Cherubina 1813
Anonymous The Universal Believer 1815
James Hogg from The Poetic Mirror 1816
William Hone from his Parodies on The Book of Common Prayer 1817
John Keats The Gothic Looks Solemn 1817
Anonymous The Old Tolbooth 1818
Thomas Love Peacock from Nightmare Abbey 1818
D M Moir The Rime of the Auncient Waggonere 1819
Anonymous Pleasant Walks A Cockney Pastoral 1819
John Hamilton Reynolds Peter Bell 1819
D M Moir Christabel Part Third 1819
John Wilson Lockhart from Benjamin the Waggoner 1819
Lord Byron The Vision of Judgment 1821
Anonymous To the Veiled Magician 1822
Anonymous Lyrical Ballad 1822
Thomas Colley Grattan Confessions of an English Glutton 1823
Caroline Bowles Southey Letter from a Washerwoman and Fragments 1823
Catherine Maria Fanshawe Fragment in Imitation of Wordsworth nd
William Hay Forbes Cockney Contributions for the First of April 1824
William Frederick Deacon from Warreniana 1824
Thomas Hood Ode to Mr Graham from Odes and Addresses to Great People 1825
Thomas Love Peacock Proemium of an Epic from Paper Money Lyrics 1825
Hartley Coleridge He Lived Amidst Th Untrodden Ways 1827
James Hogg Ode to a Highland Bee 1829
Anonymous A Driver of a Rattling Cab 1831
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Page 27 - Knives and Scissors to grind, O'! "Tell me, Knife-grinder, how came you to grind knives? Did some rich man tyrannically use you? Was it the squire? or parson of the parish? Or the attorney? "Was it the squire, for killing of his game, or Covetous parson, for his tithes distraining? Or roguish lawyer, made you lose your little All in a lawsuit? "(Have you not read the Rights of Man, by Tom Paine?) Drops of compassion tremble on my eyelids, Ready to fall, as soon as you have told your Pitiful story.
Page 26 - Needy Knife-grinder! whither are you going? Rough is the road, your Wheel is out of order — Bleak blows the blast; — your hat has got a hole in't, So have your breeches! 'Weary Knife-grinder! little think the proud ones, Who in their coaches roll along the turnpikeroad, what hard work 'tis crying all day "Knives and "Scissors to grind O!
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