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Wordsworth and Coleridge

Wordsworth and Coleridge explore a number of common themes, one of the most important of which is the importance of individual experience. How does Wordsworth in ‘Composed Upon Westminster Bridge’ and Coleridge in ‘The Eolian Harp’, deal with this theme? William Wordsworth and Samuel Coleridge can be seen as two of the great poets and important figures of the romantic period. The genre of poetry reveals and interprets our hidden emotions and can also be seen to call attention to many aspects of life that may be overlooked. This is definitely the case for romantic poetry, with writers such as Wordsworth and Coleridge using intense and imaginative language to explore human emotion through rejecting the realities of the late 18th century and focusing on the natural world. Throughout this essay I will provide a close analysis of Wordsworth’s ‘Composed Upon Westminster Bridge’ and Coleridge’s ‘The Eolian Harp’, showing how both writers express the ideas of the Romantic period through recognizing and expressing the importance of individual experience. One of the dominant characteristics of Romantic poetry is the strong interest in the natural landscape. Driver comments that ‘the romantics actively interact with nature; they have thoughts and feelings which are specifically provoked by natural scenes’(15). Not only did they observe and describe the natural environment, they also developed an individual experience through engaging with nature. Wordsworth’s experiences with the natural world throughout his life provided constant inspiration for his poetry. ‘The happiest years of his life had been spent near the mountains and heaths. His most exalted experiences and his periods of deepest insight were deeply connected with them’(89 Havens). In ‘Composed Upon Westminster Bridge’, we find Wordsworth engaged in an experience of viewing London’s city in the morning. When reading this poem I asked myself the ...

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Wordsworth and Coleridge. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 01:22, January 26, 2015, from