John Mullan: William Wordsworth
5 April 2001
Show More Wordsworth: A Life by Juliet Barker.
Viking, 971 pp., £25, October 2000, 9780670872138Show More
The Hidden Wordsworth by Kenneth Johnston.
Pimlico, 690 pp., £15, September 2000, 0 7126 6752 0Show More
Disowned by Memory: Wordsworth’s Poetry of the 1790s by David Bromwich.
Chicago, 186 pp., £9.50, April 2000, 0 226 07556 7Show More
“... for nothing, and not a few faulty passages, but I know of no poet in any language who has written so much that is good,’ Robert Southey wrote (the declaration is emblazoned on the dust-jacket of JulietBarker’s new Life). Yet any sense of this – of the subtle, elementary qualities of Wordsworth’s verse – is rarely apparent to those who study him, and rarely apparent in the throng of books ...”