Biographia Literaria

Biographia Literaria

Biographia Literaria

When Coleridge and Wordsworth were neighbors, they used to discuss the two cardinal points of poetry:

1. The power of exciting the reader’s sympathy by faithful adherence to the truth
2. The power of giving interest of novelty by modifying the colors of imagination

These effects, according to them, are the “Poetry of Nature”

Origin of Lyrical Ballads

Wordsworth and Coleridge suggested a series of poems that would be of two sorts:

1. Incidents and agents were to be, in part, at least, supernatural. The excellence aimed at was to invest the affections by the dramatic truth of such emotions assuming them real.

These wee the ones that Coleridge contributed, such as the “Rime of the Ancient Mariner” and “Christabel”

2. Subjects chosen from ordinary life – characters and incidents that can be found in every village where there is a meditative and feeling mind to seek after them. The excellence aimed here was to imbue the charm of novelty to the things of everyday: to excite a feeling analogous to the supernatural, by “awakening the minds attention from the lethargy of custom and directing it to the loveliness and wonders of the world around us, an inexhaustible treasure.

On Wordsworth’s Statements about the Language of Real life ..

In the “Advertisement” and the “Preface” which were both written by Wordsworth, it seemed that he indicated that all poetry should use the language of real life and avoid the “usual ornaments and extras.”

Coleriddge maintains that he has always disagreed with the meaning that seems to be put forth by the statement which has been the understanding of the reading public and which also seems to be the interpretation of the words themselves. Coleridge calls Worsworth’s Statement as “Poetic Creed”

Coleridge’s definition of a Poem, Poety, and Poet



• Proper form of poetry
• Favors the most perfect blend of content...