1824 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Horace Smith

Robert Southey, 27 May 1824, Life and Correspondence (1849-50) 1:106-07.



Men of very inferior power may imitate the manner of good writers with great success; as, for example, the two Smiths have done; but I do not believe than any imitative talent could produce such genuine nonsense verses, like those of The Shepherd's Farewell. The intention of writing nonsensically would appear, and betray the purpose of the writer. Pure, involuntary, unconscious nonsense is inimitable by any effort of sense.