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William Gilbert and Esoteric RomanticismA Contextual Study and Annotated Edition of 'The Hurricane'$
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Paul Cheshire

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781786941206

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781786941206.001.0001

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Bristol and the First Romantics

Bristol and the First Romantics

(p.42) Chapter Two Bristol and the First Romantics
William Gilbert and Esoteric Romanticism

Paul Cheshire

Liverpool University Press

Following his 1795 return to Bristol, Gilbert became part of the circle around the bookseller/publisherJoseph Cottle which included the first generation of English Romantic poets. Gilbert, as an alluring cross-pollination from a non-literary tradition, had a degree of fascination for young poets in search of new forms and new subject matter. The congenial atmosphere of poetry writing preserved in Cottle’s ‘Bristol Album’ raises the possibility that this is how Gilbert acquired the confidence to write or share his poetry. By concentrating on the group as a literary coterie, and paying more attention to its marginal figures, this chapter seeks to show how much the well-known poems of Coleridge, Wordsworth, and Southey owe to the evolving aesthetic values of the group.

Keywords:   Joseph Cottle, Bristol, Romantics, coterie

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