Biographia Literaria

Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Biographia Literaria

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Title: Biographia Literaria
Author: Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Release Date: July, 2004 [EBook #6081] [Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first posted on November 3, 2002]
Edition: 10
Language: English
Character set encoding: ASCII

This eBook was prepared by: Tapio Riikonen, [email protected] (Please let me know what kind of errors and formatting issues you found in the text.)

by Samuel Taylor Coleridge


I Motives to the present work--Reception of the Author's first publication--Discipline of his taste at school--Effect of contemporary writers on youthful minds--Bowles's Sonnets- Comparison between the poets before and since
II Supposed irritability of genius brought to the test of facts--Causes and occasions of the charge--Its injustice
III The Author's obligations to Critics, and the probable occasion--Principles of modern criticism--Mr. Southey's works and character
IV The Lyrical Ballads with the Preface--Mr. Wordsworth's earlier poems--On Fancy and Imagination--The investigation of the distinction important to the Fine Arts
V On the law of Association--Its history traced from Aristotle to Hartley
VI That Hartley's system, as far as it differs from that of Aristotle, is neither tenable in theory, nor founded in facts
VII Of the necessary consequences of the Hartleian Theory--Of the original mistake or equivocation which procured its admission--Memoria technica
VIII The system of Dualism introduced by Des Cartes--Refined first by Spinoza and afterwards by Leibnitz into the doctrine of Harmonia praestabilita--Hylozoism--Materialism --None of these systems, or any possible theory of Association, supplies or supersedes a theory of Perception, or explains the formation of the Associable
XI Is Philosophy possible as a science, and what are its conditions?--Giordano Bruno--Literary Aristocracy, or the existence of a tacit compact among the learned as a privileged order--The Author's obligations to the Mystics- To Immanuel Kant--The difference between the letter and The spirit of Kant's writings, and a vindication of Prudence in the teaching of Philosophy--Fichte's attempt to complete the Critical system-Its partial success and ultimate failure--Obligations to Schelling; and among English writers to Saumarez
Chapter of
digression and anecdotes, as an interlude preceding that on the nature and genesis of the Imagination or Plastic Power--On Pedantry and pedantic expressions-- Advice to young authors respecting publication--Various anecdotes of the Author's literary life, and the progress of his opinions in Religion and Politics
XI An affectionate exhortation to those who in early life feel themselves disposed to become authors
Chapter of
requests and premonitions concerning the perusal or omission of the chapter that follows
XIII On the Imagination, or Esemplastic power
XIV Occasion of the Lyrical Ballads, and the objects originally proposed--Preface to the second edition--The ensuing controversy, its causes and acrimony--Philosophic definitions of a Poem and Poetry with scholia
XV The specific symptoms of poetic power elucidated in a Critical analysis of Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis, and Rape of Lucrece
XVI Striking points of difference between the Poets of the present age and those of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries--Wish expressed for the union of the characteristic merits of both
XVII Examination of the tenets peculiar to Mr. Wordsworth-- Rustic life (above all, low and rustic life) especially unfavourable to the formation of a human diction-The best parts of language the product of philosophers, not of clowns or shepherds--Poetry essentially ideal and generic-- The language of Milton as much the language of real life, yea, incomparably more so than that of the cottager
XVIII Language of metrical composition, why and wherein essentially different from that of prose--Origin and elements of metre --Its necessary consequences, and the conditions thereby imposed on the metrical writer in the choice of his diction
XIX Continuation--Concerning the real object, which, it is probable, Mr. Wordsworth had before him in his critical preface--Elucidation and application of this
XX The former subject continued--The neutral style, or that common to Prose and Poetry, exemplified by specimens from Chaucer, Herbert, and others
XXI Remarks on the present mode of conducting critical journals
XXII The characteristic defects of Wordsworth's poetry, with the principles from which the judgment, that they are
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