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Idylls of the King and a Selection of Poems…
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Idylls of the King and a Selection of Poems

by Alfred Tennyson

Other authors: Oscar Williams (Editor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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You pretty much can't avoid reading Idylls of the King, if you're going to study Arthuriana, and I'd already read some of it, here and there. But I decided to finally sit my way down and work through them from the beginning. Tennyson's poetry is wonderful, though of course very formal (to the modern reader, at least). His treatment of female characters (is there a truly positive female character in his work?) is troubling, but the quality of the writing and the love he had for his vision of Camelot shines through.

He doesn't seem to like Gawain much, which, boo.

This collection also includes some of his poetry, and an introduction to the Idylls by Glenn Everett. ( )
  shanaqui | Apr 9, 2013 |
I get the impression not everyone loves Tennyson. I get that; he's a pompous douche. I always kinda liked him, though. I think his strongest stuff here - Arthur's speech to Guinevere, in "Guinevere," comes to mind - is staggering. Sometimes you have to work a little too hard to figure out what the hell he's banging on about, though. You get the impression he's being purposefully obtuse because he thinks that's what poets are supposed to do. ( )
  AlCracka | Apr 2, 2013 |
Beautiful poetry ( )
  Elizabeth.Michele | Oct 11, 2007 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Alfred Tennysonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Williams, OscarEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Barker, GeorgeForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The Signet Classic edition with selections made by Oscar Williams. Do not combine with books containing different selections.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451524705, Mass Market Paperback)

Alfred, Lord Tennyson evokes past and present, seeking to reconcile the Victorian zeal for public progress with private despair. Full of eloquence, epic grandeur, and myth, his haunting, rhapsodic poems still cast their lyrical spell today.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:30 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

With regal melancholy and superb craftsmanship, Tennyson's poems evoke Past and Present-the Isle of the Lotos-eaters, Camelot, and his own twilit English gardens-seeking to reconcile the Victorian zeal for public progress with private despair. He juxtaposes opposites-not only Past and Present, but also Beauty and Squalor, High Class and Low-and then entwines them. The closeness of these opposites lets Tennyson's poems "transcend their own achievements and their own intentions." (George Barker) Praised over all other poets for his unerring portraits of the gentleman and the beggar alike, Tennyson still favored neither. And just as these portraits hang together, his poems are accessible to both "intellectual potentates [and] the common or sensible man." (George Barker) Using eloquence, melancholy, and myths, Alfred Lord Tennyson proved to be the stylist most imitated by poets of his day.… (more)

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