Treatment of Nature by William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge Essay

Treatment of Nature by William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge Essay

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William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge had vastly different writing styles as well as opinions of the material they treated in their writing. One of the primary differences between the two is how each treats nature in his work. Wordsworth, in his self-proclaimed writing like the common man, often expresses a nostalgic appreciation for nature, as can be seen in “Tintern Abbey”. On the other hand, Coleridge’s character, the mariner from “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” scorns nature and only learns to respect it, not necessarily to love it. Coleridge treats the supernatural far more than Wordsworth, and it is debatable as to whether or not his frequent use of opium contributes to this tendency. Overall, it stands to reason that nature is presented as a pure, innocent, and desirable thing to Wordsworth, and Coleridge’s writing deems it unpleasant, albeit powerful.
Wordsworth’s “Tintern Abbey” is a poignant view of his return to the Banks of Wye, where he spent much of his youth. He clearly feels favorably toward Nature, which as it seems is the entire focus of the poem. After a description spanning the first 21 line stanza about certain aspects of the Nature he recalls favorably, he calls them “beauteous forms” and says that he experiences “feelings too of unremembered pleasure” because of them (line 22, 30-31). Wordsworth’s mission statement in Lyrical Ballads is essentially to use the language and to recapture the beauty of ordinary men, while still establishing his prowess in poetry. His account of nature in “Tintern Abbey” represents not necessarily the language of ordinary men, but he believes these pure forms of nature upon which he reminisces to be a common good across the lines of class. However, he claim...


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...osing Wordsworth and Coleridge’s poems, it can be deduced that Nature must be loved and feared. This might seem reminiscent with traditional views of God, as he is believed to be a beautiful albeit powerful form of power. Thus, Nature is established as an all-encompassing form of power that can govern one’s life.



Works Cited

1. Coleridge, Samuel Taylor. “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.” Norton Anthology of English Literature: The Romantic Period: Volume D, 8th edition. Ed. Greenblatt, Stephen. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2006. 430-446. Print.

2. Wordsworth, William. “Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey, on Revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour, July 13, 1798.” Norton Anthology of English Literature: The Romantic Period: Volume D, 8th edition. Ed. Greenblatt, Stephen. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2006. 258-262. Print.

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