Metaphysical poets by T.S Eliot

Metaphysical poets or poetry by T.S Eliot


T.S Eliot has given the views on metaphysical poetry and poets in his essay ‘’metaphysical poets’’. T.S Eliot gives the definition about the metaphysical poetry in his essay. T.S Eliot‘s views that the metaphysical poets are neither quaint nor fantastic. He considers them great and mature persons as a poet. He tries to inquire about the status of the metaphysical poets in the new modern era. He has observed the digression of the metaphysical school.
How T.S Eliot defines metaphysical poetry?
T.S Eliot finds difficulty in defining the term metaphysical poets. He takes the definition from Dr. Johnson definition of metaphysical poetry. He tries to define the metaphysical poetry with reference to it’s demerits and faults. He has presented the idea in his article ‘’life of Cowley.’’ It is about the combination of heterogeneous ideas by the use of force. This is an idea about the unification of different thoughts and ideas. These ideas are put collectively in the mind of the poet and the artist. This is about the assimilation of the two different ideas. According to this theory, the ideas are picked from the different range of the world. Eliot says that metaphysical poets are able to unite different ideas by violence. He has borrowed the concept from different poets such as Cowley, Hubert, Bishop King and other poets. He says that we cannot differentiate the metaphysical poetry from the other poetry.
John Donne and other 17th century poets
These poets contributed to the normal development of the poetry. And their values lie in their characteristics. And there was digression in their values. These poets use the way to analyze certain subject matter. They put much more focus on the analysis than the meaning of the subject. They tried to highlight the particular emotional situations in order to create a special effect. But he was confronted with the reality that he was failed to witness the unification of these analysis to make a new subject matter. Their main characteristic was to unit different ideas and thoughts with rigorous force. So the metaphysical poetry is distinguished from the other poetry on many grounds.
Unified sensibility
T.S Eliot has witnessed a unified sensibility exercised by the Elizabethans and the Jacobean writers and poets. Eliot considers it a wider and universal idea. He takes it as a source of receiving emotions and impressions and the capacity for gaining the impressions. It is about the faculty of fusing and uniting different thoughts and ideas. The concept is used to amalgamate the two heterogeneous ideas. The contradictory ideas and experiences are intended to be fused into one whole organ. The Elizabethans were having the best capacity for the unified sensibility. They were learned and sensible people. They have wide knowledge about certain things. This increases the capacity for thinking better and making their thoughts more refined. T.S Eliot has observed that the writers and the poets after the death of Donne and Herbert were failed to unite the heterogeneous ideas. There was a great change observed in the tradition of English poetry in England. The unification of sensibility was never practiced again and seemed to be lost somewhat deeply. It was replaced by the disassociations of the sensibility. After that, there is the type poetry which exhibits the feelings or the thought at one time. But there was never found the fusion of thoughts and feelings. Then there was the age of realism and the intellect. They were guided by reason, intellect, and thought. Their writings were full of intellectualism but there were no constraints of feelings and emotions. Their poetry was based on their deep thinking and thought. Tennyson and browning depicted the realism and intellect in his works. Their poetry is based on their real experience and on real events.
The similarity between the age of DONNE and the Modern age
T.S Eliot traces the similarity between the poetry by John Donne and the poetry in the modern age. T.S Eliot sees a connection between the sensibility exercised by the metaphysical poets and the poetry produced by the modern poets. There is difficulty in the identification of metaphysical poetry and there is also difficulty in composing modern ideas. The metaphysical poets used conceits to portray their ideas. These conceits were used to fuse different ideas. The modern poets also used conceits and ideas that were employed by the metaphysical poets.
The language used by Metaphysical poets
The poets use simple, refined and pure language to depict their ideas in metaphysical poetry. The verses used by Herbert depict simplicity and refinement. The 18th-century poets also use the meter like the metaphysical poems. There is a great difference between the languages used by the two poets of different eras. They use short and long syllables in order to convey the idea according to the demand of the situation. These usages create a special effect in the formation of the poetry.
The poet of the 17th century as the successor of 16th century
They were regarded as the successor of the ancestor poets because of the qualities inherited from them. They possessed certain qualities like them. They were following their path in order to create poetry in the era. They were creating simple, artificial and refined poetry of all types. They were fantastic in their treatment of metaphysical poetry. There were two great names that influenced the metaphysical poetry in that era were Milton and Dryden. They both contributed to the gulf of mainstream poetry. They performed their duties as the poets with much zeal that they gained a very good reputation in the poetic line in that era. They influenced the language, style and tone of the poetry of that era. They depicted a struggle towards the attainment of the unified sensibility for the fusion of the thoughts and the feelings. They contributed a lot to trace the new literary technique in the modern and existing era.
Conclusion

T.S Eliot discussed and ended the debate by putting the remarks that the English poets and the metaphysical poets seem to be existing in the mainstream of English creative work and poetry. T.S Eliot concludes the essay by giving a remark about Donne, Herbert and Cowley as the best metaphysical poet in the line of English poetry.

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