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Organising PoetryThe Coleridge Circle, 1790-1798$
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David Fairer

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199296163

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199296163.001.0001

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Organising Friendship: Coleridge, Lamb, and Lloyd

Organising Friendship: Coleridge, Lamb, and Lloyd

Chapter:
(p.211) 9 Organising Friendship: Coleridge, Lamb, and Lloyd
Source:
Organising Poetry
Author(s):

David Fairer (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199296163.003.0010

The organisation of individual friendships is an integral part of this book's story, and this chapter traces Coleridge's developing poetic intimacies with Lamb and Lloyd, whose identities sympathetically overlapped with each other, and whose tendency to idealism, especially their idealising of Coleridge himself, almost inevitably brought a critical reaction from him. Their poetic pledges and mementoes became vulnerable to treachery and violation; secret meanings were caught up in questions of trust and betrayal. Rather than being negotiated in a more open and organic way, through elements of adaptability and compromise, their friendships with Coleridge tended to be freighted with idealistic hopes in which poetic incompatibilities were symptomatic of personal ones. These finally proved decisive, and in each case moved to a moment of crisis that was simultaneously biographical and textual.

Keywords:   Coleridge, Southey, Lamb, Lloyd, friendship, idealism, Hartley

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