Charlotte Turner Smith: Poems

Close Reading: Sonnet 32 by Charlotte Smith College

The new sensibility that characterizes Romantic literature often leads to the recurrence of melancholy as a powerful and recurrent motif, especially in poetry. Romantic poets recur to their poems to express personal feelings and anxieties and in order to capture this, poets use the imagination. As Addison and Shaftesbury put it, `the imagination must not be subordinate to the intellect and focuses on the beauty of wild nature as a source of melancholy.´1. This paper is going to analyse Charlotte Smith´s sonnet 32, `To Melancholy´ as a representation of the new mood and conception of the world that characterizes Romantic poetry and the strong influence of nature as a powerful and magical force able to connect different worlds.

Smith`s Sonnet 32 turns around melancholy and, since the very beginning, the poet states that theses verses are addressed `[t]o melancholy´, an element that is personified and which is attributed the power of a character itself. In this way, the poet's mood will be one of the central theme in the poem and every element that appears in it is acting as a fellowship that matches perfectly with Smith`s feeling. There are many theories about the voice in Smith´s poems and whether...

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