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Norse Terror in the Late Eighteenth to Early Nineteenth Centuries
Robert Rix

Antiquarian efforts to revive Old Norse poetry brought about an interest in Germanic superstition that could be exploited by literary writers. This article examines a subspecies of terror writing which took inspiration from Norse literature. Compared to the Catholic settings of many Gothic novels, Norse-inflected writing provided an alternative. It is a little known fact that the Old Norse religion and literature was used as a prism through which Britains ethnically Gothic past could be viewed and negotiated. The article discusses some examples of how the fashion for thrills was combined with a national project to recover a sense of ancestral heroism.

Gothic Studies
Joshua Davies

115 3 Medievalist double consciousness and the production of difference: Medieval bards, cultural memory and nationalist fantasy Thomas Gray’s 1757 poem ‘The Bard’ sits at the centre of a complex network of medievalist cultural memory. Gray was an accomplished scholar and historian as well as poet, familiar with many works of medieval as well as Classical literature, and his poem was first published at his good friend Horace Walpole’s press at Strawberry Hill. An image of Walpole’s astonishing medievalist building is printed on its title page (see Figure  3

in Visions and ruins
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Eighteenth-century Gothic poetics
Andrew Smith

need to be engaged with before that past can ‘die’). Nevertheless there are also, for Hogle, telling symbolic (and structural) points of connection between the elegy and the Gothic. Hogle notes that Richard Bentley’s illustration to Thomas Gray’s ‘Elegy Written in a Country Church-Yard’ (1751) makes visible a number of issues in the poem that are also to be found in later Gothic narratives from the

in Gothic death 1740–1914
Alison Morgan

, this trope predates the era of revolution when such rhetoric was common currency. John Lucas observes that, ‘in the early years of the eighteenth century, liberty and Englishness become synonymous concepts and virtually interchangeable terms, and it is in response to this that the construction of a national literature was and would continue to be so important’.5 Eighteenth-century poems such as William Collins’ ‘Ode to Liberty’ and Thomas Gray’s ‘Progress of Poesy’, champion both liberty and English national identity, with the fusion of public and private

in Ballads and songs of Peterloo
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Peter Barry

quite lengthy, and addressed to an abstraction (as in Keats’s ‘Ode on Melancholy’), an inanimate object (as in the same poet’s ‘Ode on a Grecian Urn’), a view (as in Thomas Gray’s ‘Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College’), an element (as in Shelley’s ‘Ode to the West Wind’) or a group or category of people (as in Allen Tate’s ‘Ode to the Confederate Dead’). A good example of the Pindaric ode in English is Thomas Gray’s helpfully subtitled ‘The Bard: A Pindaric Ode’ (1754–55), which tells the story of Edward I’s subjugation of Wales, and how the order was given by

in Reading poetry
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Brian Mcfarlane

. 4 Thomas Gray, ‘An Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard’. 5 John Ellis, ‘The quality film adventure: British critics and the cinema 1942 1948’, in Andrew Higson (éd.), Dissolving Views: Key Writings on British Cinema (London, Cassell), 1996. 6

in Lance Comfort
Serena Trowbridge

most famous ‘graveyard’ poem, Thomas Gray’s ‘Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard’ ( c. 1745–50), which illustrates this combination, causing the poem to serve as a memorial to the poet as well as a memento mori for the reader. In Gray’s poem, corpses receive little mention, although they are implicitly at its heart. Earlier poems such as Edward Young’s The Complaint

in The Gothic and death
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Joshua Davies

ranges from Thomas Gray’s Pindaric Ode to the Cædmon Memorial, from E. M. Barry’s Victorian Eleanor Cross to Michael Landy’s kinetic sculptures of medieval saints. While all these works can be understood and appreciated without detailed knowledge of the medieval material with which they work, I suggest they nevertheless offer rich insights into aspects of medieval culture and how the medieval has been defined and understood in the postmedieval world. Developing the ideas of appropriation, translation and networks of influence outlined in the opening chapter, Chapter  2

in Visions and ruins
Remembering the Norse
Tim William Machan

, it is not an inapt way to describe what Britons and other European visitors experienced in Iceland in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Buoyed by the first wave of romantic musings like Bishop Percy’s Five Pieces of Runic Poetry and Thomas Gray’s ‘The Descent of Odin’, early travellers witnessed a spectacular but menacing landscape of volcanoes and glaciers, vistas unlike any to be found in Great Britain. William Morris, an Iceland enthusiast writing at nearly the same time as Burton, nonetheless described the island as ‘an awful place: set aside the hope

in From Iceland to the Americas
Peter Barry

, and the inevitable cycle of change and decay, themes which are more usually dealt with in poetry in a discursive, meditative, reflective manner, as in Thomas Gray’s eighteenth-century poem ‘Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard’. If that is the case, then this is a different kind of minimalism from that of Hulme’s ‘Sounds fluttered’ poem, for whereas that one is almost completely open-ended, embodying a pretty well infinite potential for implied significance, the ‘Old houses’ piece seems to crystallise Barry.indb 161 9/6/2013 8:43:45 AM 162  Reading beyond the

in Reading poetry