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Sound IntentionsThe Workings of Rhyme in Nineteenth-Century Poetry$
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Peter McDonald

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199661190

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199661190.001.0001

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Alfred Tennyson

Alfred Tennyson

Memory and Hope

(p.167) 4 Alfred Tennyson
Sound Intentions

Peter Mcdonald

Oxford University Press

This chapter looks at In Memoriam and verse as ‘sad mechanic exercise’, Tennyson's figuring of intention and lack of will in the poem's rhyme-scheme; rhymes on ‘brain’, and the influence here of Keats. It also examines the abba scheme as parting and restoration, distance and proximity. It looks at the equivocal relation between ‘grief’ and ‘relief’, ‘change’/‘strange’ in In Memoriam, and the relation to Shakespeare's The Tempest. It further examines the prominence of Keats's ‘Ode to a Nightingale’ in In Memoriam, Tennyson on Keats and the ‘daimonisch’, the idea of the ‘waking trance’ in The Princess and elsewhere, Tennyson and the uses of repetition, Wordsworth's ‘Tintern Abbey’ and Tennyson's burden of the self in verse, and rhyme-effects and repetition in ‘Tears, Idle Tears’. Finally it explores Arthur Hallam on rhyme and memory; In Memoriam and Wordsworth's Immortality Ode in terms of pre-birth and after-death ideas of memory; and repetition, rhyme, and the uncanny.

Keywords:   In Memoriam, rhyme-schemes, Keats, Wordsworth, memory, uncanny

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