1833 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Robert Southey

John Wilson, in "Spenser" Blackwood's Magazine 34 (1833) 807.



Southey, too claims Spenser for his master, like the minstrel of Tweedside [Sir Walter Scott], and with better reason; for of all our living poets, not one has shewn so fine a vein of feeling and fancy as the Laureate, when illustrating the moral affections, by "truth severe in fairy fiction dressed." — Witness Thalaba and Oneiza, Ladurlad and Laila — and all the wild and touching incidents and events with which he complicates his tales, all so beautifully unravelled at the close, which, though sometimes very sad, is yet consolatory, and, after a little while, leaves the pensive spirit in peace.