Across the nineteenth century, meter mattered-in more ways and to more people than we might well appreciate today. For the period's poets, metrical matters were a source of inspiration and often vehement debate. And the many readers, teachers, and pupils encountered meter and related topics in both institutional and popular forms.
The ten essays in Meter Matters showcase the range of metrical practice of poets from Wordsworth and Byron to Hopkins, Swinburne, and Tennyson; at the same time, the contributors bring into focus some of the metrical theorizing that shaped poetic thinking and responses to it throughout the nineteenth century. Paying close attention to the historical contours of Romantic and Victorian meters, as well as to the minute workings of the verse line, Meter Matters presents a fresh perspective on a subject that figured significantly in the century's literature, and in its culture.
Jason David Hall is a lecturer in English at the University of Exeter, UK. He is the author of Seamus Heaney's Rhythmic Contract and editor, with Ashby Bland Crowder, of Seamus Heaney: Poet, Critic, Translator.
Table of Contents * List of Illustrations * Preface * Acknowledgments * Introduction A Great Multiplication of Meters Jason David Hall * One: Meter and Meaning Isobel Armstrong * Two: Romantic Measures Stressing the Sound of Sound Susan J. Wolfson * Three: Byron's Feet Matthew Bevis * Four: "Break, Break, Break" into Song Yopie Prins * Five: Material Patmore Jason R. Rudy * Six: "For the Inscape 's Sake" Sounding the Self in the Meters of Gerard Manley Hopkins Summer J. Star * Seven: "But the Law Must Itself Be Poetic" Swinburne, Omond, and the New Prosody Yisrael Levin * Eight: Popular Ballads Rhythmic Remediations in the Nineteenth Century Michael Cohen * Nine: Blank Verse and the Expansion of England The Meter of Tennyson's Demeter cornelia Pearsall * Ten: Prosody Wars Meredith Martin * Select Bibliography * Notes on * Contributors * Index