Bird Poems of the Romantic Poets

The bird is traditionally an image of the poetic voice and, as such, held much appeal for poets of the Romantic period. We shall read about the nightingale and the skylark, of course, but also the snipe and the owl, always looking to discover the poet’s perspective on each bird – from the ethereal to the terrestrial, from the fanciful to the carefully observed. We shall sample a few women writers of the eighteenth century, then progress through Coleridge and Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats and Clare and, if time, into the Victorian age with Hardy’s ‘Darkling Thrush’.


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