Tennyson’s Conversation: the Last Days
He began about Catullus: ‘Catullus says that a poet’s lines may be impure provided his life is pure. I don’t agree with him: his verses fly much further than he does. There is hardly any crime greater than for a man with genius to propagate vice by his written words. I have always admired him: “Acme and Septimius” is lovely. Then he has very pretty metres. “Collis O Heliconii” is in a beautiful metre. I wrote a great part of my Jubilee Ode in it. People didn’t understand. They don’t understand these things. They don’t understand English scansion. In the line ‘Dream not of where some sunny rose may linger’ they said the first syllable of ‘sunny’ was long, whereas it evidently is short. Doubling the n in English makes the vowel before short.’
KeywordsGreat Part Great Difficulty Great Insight Fine Metre Ordinary Sense
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