Understanding Feeling

  • J. C. C. Mays
Part of the Nineteenth-Century Major Lives and Letters book series (19CMLL)


Coleridge evidently thought a lot about feeling in the years before “Dejection” was published, and less so, or less overtly, in the years thereafter. The present chapter traces this development through earlier poems to determine the meaning of “I see, not feel,” and ponders the relevance of the phrase to the words Fancy and Imagination which make their first appearance together in stanza VI. It argues that Coleridge’s utilisation of three stanzas of the Ode in an 1814 essay can lead to erroneous conclusions, as can the attempt to join the argument of the Ode to that of Biographia Literaria; and that only thereafter did his thinking begin to recover its earlier direction, with further revision and sophistication.

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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. C. C. Mays
    • 1
  1. 1.University College DublinDublinIreland

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