1844 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Mary Tighe

Robert Chambers, in Cyclopaedia of English Literature (1844; 1850) 2:279.



An Irish poetess, MRS. MARY TIGHE (1773-1810), evinced a more passionate and refined imagination than any of her tuneful sisterhood. Her poem of Psyche, founded on the classic fable related by Apuleius, of the loves of Cupid and Psyche, or the allegory of Love and the Soul, is characterised by a graceful voluptuousness and brilliancy of colouring rarely excelled. It is in six cantos, and wants only a little more concentration of style and description to be one of the best poems of the period. Mrs. Tighe was daughter of the Rev. W. Blackford, county of Wicklow. Her history seems to be little known, unless to private friends; but her early death, after six years of protracted suffering, has been commemorated by Moore, in his beautiful lyric — "I saw thy form in youthful prime."