A Mind For Ever Voyaging: Wordsworth at Work Portraying by W. K. Thomas

By W. K. Thomas

Wordsworth depicted Newton, as Roubiliac could have performed in his statue of him, as voyaging, in ecstasy, via God's sensorium. within the Prelude passage from which the name A brain For Ever Voyaging is derived, and in numerous others portraying Newton and technology, Wordsworth turns out to have written for 2 audiences, most of the people and a way smaller, inner most viewers, whereas trying to raise the minds of either to God. Like Pope sooner than him, Wordsworth completed "What oft was once wrought, yet ne'er so good exprest."

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Example text

That, it turns out, was precisely the reason for choosing the inscription. 9 Beitley refuted the Lucretian theory mentioned above by calling on the Principia, as the work of "that very excellent and divine Theorist Mr. "10 Consequently, by selecting the praise which Lucretius had applied to Epicurus, and applying it to Newton instead, the person responsible for choosing the inscription (presumably Robert Smith, who "placed" the statue in the antechapel)11 was exercising ecclesiastical one-upmanship.

Condensed... at first by the immediate hand of the Creator. . " Mallet in turn describes Newton's soul, "a pure intelligence," as after release from mortality it enjoys clear vision from all darkness purg'd, For God himself shines forth immediate there, Through those eternal climes, the frame of things, In its ideal harmony, to him Stands all reveal'd. The Excursion, Mallet's poem in which these passages appear, was reprinted in volume 9 of Anderson's Works of the British Poets which Wordsworth's brother John left with him in September of 1800.

Is this not sufficient evidence that English poets, at least English Romantic poets, were not inclined to pay tribute to Sir Isaac Newton, the man who "had destroyed all the poetry of the rainbow," who had, as Keats was to remark in his Lamia (2:237), unweaved the rainbow? 54 Certainly the view which Keats and Lamb held about the rainbow was not shared by the earlier, tribute-bearing poets. Glover had celebrated Newton's prismatic analysis as particularly magnificent: But, O bright angel of the lamp of day, How shall the muse display his greatest toil?

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