Percy Shelley: Hard-line Romantic
The Romantic Period, which lasted about 45 years, gave birth to a new genre of literature, political thought, and it began a new era of history. Many authors contributed to the new ideals that characterize The Romantic Period. One author in particular was Percy Shelley who had written during The Romantic Period. The romantic ideals and characteristics can be found in the writings of Shelley.
One of the ideologies of The Romantic Period was the creativity of the imagination, and Shelley’s writings are littered with examples of this ideology. One example of this is in Shelley’s poem “To Sidmouth and Castlereagh”, in this poem Shelley refers to these men as “Two vipers tangled into one” (20). Through this description Shelley indicates what he thinks of these two men by attributing non-human characteristics to them, and thus gives an example of the use of Shelley’s imagination. Another example of Shelley giving humans non-human characteristics is in the poem “Ode to the West Wind” in which Shelley gives himself these characteristics as “What if my leaves are falling like its own!” (58) Also in the poem “The flower that smiles today”, Shelley gives a flower positive human characteristic, “The flower that smiles today.” (1) Even in the poem “O World, O Life, O Time”, Shelley imagines that he must deal with the challenges that each brings to him, “O World, O Life, O Time, On whose last steps I climb.” (1-2) It can be seen that Shelley’s imagination provided him with a strong basis for his writings.
Another characteristic of The Romantic Period that is seen in Shelley’s writings is the theme of the supernatural. The mention of gods, death, or characters of myth are present throughout Shelley’s works. An example of the supernatural in Shelley’s poems is in the poem “Alastor”, in which Shelley makes reference to a “colossal Skeleton” (611),...