But, as Johann Wolfgang von Goethe put it, "the abnormal is also natural," and the metaphysical...
The name "Metaphysical Poets" was used by the poet and critic Samuel Johnson to designate a loose group of 17th century English lyric poets whose work was distinguished by the imaginative use of conceits and speculation on issues such as love or religion. Johnson described their poetry as "metaphysical" because it treated topics such as love or morality with an intellectual seriousness not found in other poets of its time.
The word "metaphysical" is derived from the Greek meta, meaning "after," and physis, meaning "nature." Thus, metaphysical poetry is poetry that treats subjects such as love or morality after the manner of philosophers rather than poets. The term was coined in 1805 by James Macpherson who published a collection of poems under this title. In his preface, he states that the poems deal with "such things as require investigation rather than imitation, and can be done justice to only by men of thought and reflection."
Macpherson's collection included works by William Collins, Thomas Campbell, John Clare, and Walter Scott. All were friends or acquaintances and all were influenced by Scottish literature. Although none of them knew it, they were founding members of the metaphysical school.
Words have different meanings for different people.
The critic Samuel Johnson created the term "metaphysical poets" to characterize a loose group of 17th-century English poets whose work was distinguished by the imaginative use of conceits and a stronger focus on the spoken rather than lyrical nature of their poems. Johnson argued that they were not true poets because they did not write in Latin nor did they deal with classical subjects.
They do, however, deal with some extremely metaphysical topics including time, eternity, soul, body, vision, and death. Some even go as far as to say that they are all but metaphysical fiction writers since none of them actually lived. John Donne is considered the most important member of this group because of his influential role in bringing about the change from medieval poetic forms to early modern ones.
Donne was born 1572 in London. His father was an attorney while his mother was from a family of wealthy merchants. He had two siblings: a sister who died at a young age and a brother who also became a priest like their father. Donne himself showed no interest in following in his father's footsteps so he decided to study law. However, during this time he also wrote poems which he sent to various publications hoping to find readers.
He finally got noticed when one of his poems was published under the name "George Herbert".
A Metaphysical poet is any of the 17th-century English poets who are drawn to the personal and intellectual depth and focus demonstrated in John Donne's poetry, the chief of the Metaphysicals. Donne's work pre-dating Herbert's by about 15 years brought him fame during his own lifetime but also caused controversy because it challenged many then-accepted notions about religion and morality.
He was born in 1572 in the town of Shrewsbury, England, the son of a wealthy cloth merchant. Donne's family name is sometimes given as "Donn", but this is incorrect; it is properly pronounced "Dunn". He showed an early interest in literature and at the age of 14 was sent to Cambridge University to study law, but he never completed his degree. Instead, he traveled abroad, visiting France and Italy, where he came into contact with leading thinkers of the time. He returned to England and became a successful writer and preacher. He died in 1631 at the age of 40.
John Donne's work pre-dating Herbert's by about 15 years brought him fame during his own lifetime but also caused controversy because it challenged many then-accepted notions about religion and morality. Donne was a devout Catholic and in order to avoid persecution by Protestant authorities, he had to hide his faith by writing poems that seemed to condemn it.
John Donne was the founder and head of the metaphysical poetry school. Dryden initially used this term to describe Donne, saying that he "affects the metaphysics." Abraham Cowley, Henry Vaughan, Richard Crashaw, Andrew Marvell, George Herbert, Robert Herrick, and others are examples of metaphysical poets.
Donne's work pre-dating Herbert's by about 15 years brought him fame during his own lifetime but was later overshadowed by Herbert. However, both men have been called the fathers of English poetry because of their association with the metaphysical poetry movement they founded.
Donne was born in 1572 into a wealthy family who had connections with the Church. He was educated at Cambridge University and Lincoln's Inn in London before entering the church. However, he soon left the priesthood to pursue literary interests. He became friends with other writers of his time, including Herbert, who lived near him in London. They collaborated on several projects before Herbert started writing poems on his own. Donne also wrote poems, but most of them were not published until after his death. He died in 1631 at the age of 50.
Herbert is believed to be the first British poet to be awarded royal permission to publish his work. In 1623, King James I of England granted him a license that allowed him to print three of his sonnets annually for three years.
The canon is being defined. There is no scholarly agreement on which English writers or poetry belong to the metaphysical genre. Johnson's first usage of the word cited only three poets: Abraham Cowley, John Donne, and John Cleveland. Lewis Campbell King includes William Blake and George Herbert as early contributors.
Metaphysical poetry is also known as cosmological poetry, idealism, or intuitionist poetry. The term "metaphysical" comes from the fact that these poems deal with issues such as reality, existence, mind, or spirit. They often do so by seeking answers to questions such as "what is truth?" or "how can love exist between two people who are both married?" Although they often use obscure language or cryptic imagery, these poems are important in the development of modern literature because they expand what it means to write well.
Several critics have argued that Jonathan Swift is a major figure in the history of English poetry. Some even go as far as saying that he is the greatest poet in the English language. His work can be considered metaphysical poetry because it deals with issues such as reality, existence, mind, or spirit. He used satire as a method for criticizing society's ills and was a powerful voice against the government during the political controversies of his time. His poem "A Modest Proposal" is regarded as one of the most effective satirical pieces ever written.