The Sweet New Style

  • J. C. C. Mays
Part of the Nineteenth-Century Major Lives and Letters book series (19CMLL)


The new style in which the Ode is written depends most of all on qualities of sound: a metric that combines with accent and rhythm, and builds on several years of experimentation. The lines of varying length fit an elaborate rhyming pattern that unfolds with appropriate variations through each stanza and the aid of a multi-hinged, predominantly appositive syntax. The resulting movement communicates a subtle and distinctive blend of shades of feeling—numb, ecstatic, confused, angry, and reconciled; lonely, shared, and public—as magical in itself as any of the three great Mystery Poems and geared exactly to a specific task. It stands behind the different kind of poetry Coleridge wrote in subsequent years, in ways described in Chapter  8.

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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. C. C. Mays
    • 1
  1. 1.University College DublinDublinIreland

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