By Rodney Stenning Edgecombe
While Thomas Hood has lengthy been considered as a minor comedian poet, this book--the first to commit itself solely to his verse--provides an in depth research of 2 'serious' poems ('Hero and Leander' and 'The Plea of the Midsummer Fairies') which will supply a greater feel of his variety. so much commentators have pointed to the impression of Keats on such events, yet shut exam finds a good higher debt to Elizabethan and Metaphysical poets, whose occasionally playful deployment of the vanity struck a chord in his sensibility. even as, the ebook provides Hood's comedian genius its due, offering particular debts of the deftness and panache of his light-hearted oeuvre. One bankruptcy examines his expedition into the mock-heroic mode (Odes and Addresses to nice People), and one other his reliance on that airiest of types, the capriccio (Whims and Oddities). The examine concludes with an intensive exam of 'Miss Kilmansegg and Her necessary Leg,' displaying how Hood was once right here capable of inflect a jeu d'esprit with a superb Juvenalian ardour.
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Extra resources for A Self-divided Poet: Form and Texture in the Verse of Thomas Hood
Slop" will take us back to Rabelais' Ennasin, not least because Hood has canalized the formalities of a business letter through a comic metre: MR. SCRUB—Mr Slop—or whoever you be! The Cock of Steam Laundries,—the head Patentee Of Associate Cleansers,—Chief founder and prime Of the firm for the wholesale distilling of grime— Co-partners and dealers, in linen's propriety— That make washing public—and wash in society— O lend me your ear! 75), but cancels the plural "ears," partly for the grotesque suggestion that the businessmen share an ear as the Harpies shared a tooth, but also because they are likely to give only half a mind to humanitarian issues.
61 Hood begins by going through the motions of odal apostrophe, but, by inserting "kitchen" into the phrase from Urquart, deliberately lowers the tone. Because the versatility of "Admirable Crichtons" relates more to their physical than their culinary adventures, an "Admirable kitchen Crichton" would no doubt have upset Dr Johnson's sense of decorum as much as the "knife" in Macbeth ("an instrument used by butchers and cooks in the meanest of employments"62)—in the unlikely event of his not having caught the mock-heroic tone: OH!
In Our Mutual Friend, Dickens would deplore the syllabi of the Ragged Schools, based as they were on Evangelical propaganda— Young women old in the vices of the commonest and worst life, were expected to profess themselves enthralled by the good child's book, the Adventures of Little Margery, who resided in the village cottage by the mill; severely reproved and morally squashed the miller when she was five and he was fifty; divided her porridge with singing birds; denied herself a new nankeen bonnet, on the ground that the turnips did not wear nankeen bonnets, neither did the sheep who ate them;75 Such utterances made him heir to the criticism that Hood levelled against the Quakers in Newgate: A Self-Divided Poet: Form and Texture in the Verse of Thomas Hood 29 Ah, who can tell how hard it is to drain The evil spirit from the heart it preys in,— To bring sobriety to life again, Choked with the vile Anacreontic raisin,— To wash Black Betty when her black's ingrain,— To stick a moral lacquer on Moll Brazen.