Elements Quotes (84 quotes)
The Nature and Elements of Poetry (1892)
Elements of Poetry. Readers of poetry often bring with them many related assumptions:. There are no easy ways to dispel these biases. Poetry is difficult because very often its language is indirect. But so is experience - those things we think, feel, and do.
Poetry the term derives from a variant of the Greek term, poiesis , "making" is a form of literature that uses aesthetic and rhythmic    qualities of language —such as phonaesthetics , sound symbolism , and metre —to evoke meanings in addition to, or in place of, the prosaic ostensible meaning. Poetry has a very long history , dating back to prehistorical times with the creation of hunting poetry in Africa , and panegyric and elegiac court poetry was developed extensively throughout the history of the empires of the Nile , Niger and Volta river valleys. Early poems in the Eurasian continent evolved from folk songs such as the Chinese Shijing , or from a need to retell oral epics, as with the Sanskrit Vedas , Zoroastrian Gathas , and the Homeric epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey. Ancient Greek attempts to define poetry, such as Aristotle 's Poetics , focused on the uses of speech in rhetoric , drama , song and comedy. Later attempts concentrated on features such as repetition, verse form and rhyme , and emphasized the aesthetics which distinguish poetry from more objectively informative, prosaic forms of writing.
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The series of lectures contained in this volume, although now somewhat revised and extended, formed the initial course, as delivered in , of the Percy Turnbull Memorial Lectureship of Poetry at Johns Hopkins University. In founding that lectureship, Mr. Lawrence Turnbull commemorated the name of their son, Percy Graeme Turnbull, who died in , having nearly completed his ninth year. The brief life of a child, who gave promise of fulfilling the utmost wishes of parents devoted to things good and fair, has been of higher service than that which many whose lights "burn to the socket" are permitted to render. In conformity with the terms of the gift, a course of lectures is to be delivered annually by some maker or critical student of poetry. There is but one other foundation dedicated to this art alone, as far as I can learn, among British and American universities, that being the chair endowed at Oxford by Henry Birkhead, in , from which much learned argument. An unknown error has occurred.
These lectures, as I have intimated, are purposely direct of statement, and even elementary. A word beforehand. From my point of view this does not of itself imply a lack of respect for the intelligence of the listener. The most advanced star-gazer holds to his mathematics; while, as to poetry, enthusiasts find it easier to build fine sentences than to make clear to others, if to themselves, the nature of that which affects them so inspiringly. I trust that you are willing, in place of the charm of style and the jest and epigram of discourses for entertainment, to accept a search for the very stuff whereof the Muse fashions her transubstantial garments—to discover what plant or moth supplies the sheeny fibre; in what heat, what light, the iridescent fabric is dyed and spun and woven. It has occurred to me—I think it may not seem amiss to you—that this eager modern The direct and timely question.