Clare and Burns

  • Adam White


A number of late Clare poems offer a series of passionate and heartfelt pledges on behalf of a series of often vividly imagined female figures, dramatising the idea of the insufficiency of words in the realm of love. In this, Clare was inspired by the example of Burns’s lyricism and his mastery of song. This chapter argues that, while Clare’s work often, like that of his contemporaries, evidences the complex Romantic reception of Burns, Clare was also quite unlike other Romantics in the extent to which he imitated Burns. What Burns gave Clare was, as both his early and late poems demonstrate, the precedent of hybrid forms of lyric and song that were quite unlike anything available in the English poetic tradition.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adam White
    • 1
  1. 1.The Open UniversityMilton KeynesUnited Kingdom

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