Critical Appreciation Of Keats In English

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Keats was so inspired by Chapman’s translation that he composed this sonnet to articulate the emotion and intensity he felt. By elevating his literary experience to the level of exploration, adventure, and discovery, the sonnet becomes a homage to the power of the imagination. Keats was seeking an escape “from the conventionalised diction of Augustan poetry and…knew that a good way of evading…[this]…was to…reach back to a more distant past” (Corn 75). The formal elements and manoeuvres significantly contribute to the central argument – the power of literature to stimulate new vistas of experience.

The Petrarchan form and strict adherence to the rhyme scheme (the metre is predominantly iambic pentameter) deftly structures the drama, a necessary strategy to restrain what might otherwise be an overflowing or gushing celebratory mood. Within the octet there is a sense of restlessness conveyed by the word “realms” (1) which signifies the cluster of locations (“states”, “kingdoms” (2) and “demesne” (6) ), as the speaker figuratively wanders from book to book with no bearing or purpose. Indeed, the syntax of the poem reveals a pattern: “a…concentration of disordered clauses in the octave…followed by…ordered clauses in the sestet” (Hayman 26), a contrast that seems deliberate.

The rhyme also emphasises key terms (“gold” and “bold”) which mark the first and last lines of the octet, an effective way to convey the essential argument. By framing the octet like this, Keats can
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