Learn more Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle Blind Boys of Alabama Shop now Fitbit



There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

on 1 February 2009
Thank you Penguin, for publishing the original 1798 edition of Lyrical Ballads. Wordsworth was an inveterate revisor of his poems. Whenever Lyrical ballads was republished, he took the opportunity to revise poems, add extra ones and change the order in which the originals appeared. In this edition, we get his (and Coleridge's)original ideas. These are the poems of Wordsworth and Coleridge when they were young men and still radical in their poetics as well as their politics. Anyone interested in how these two giants of Romanticism and Radicalism developed, should own a copy of this edition of Lyrical Ballads. It is instructive to compare the version of the poems in this edition with those from the 1802 edition and later ones. Great stuff.
0Comment| 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 12 May 2017
Great book
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
TOP 100 REVIEWERon 1 October 2013
I like this slim Penguin volume of the original, unrevised edition of Lyrical Ballads, from its apt cover painting of Tintern Abbey to editor Michael Schmidt`s brief, unintrusively informative three-page Note on the Text at the end.
Will & Sam (well, it`s quicker) were only in their late twenties when they decided to publish a joint collection of some of their informal poems, Wordsworth being the later reviser of this seminal anthology (eventually pushing the Mariner to a more tactful place nearer the end). Many are not all that lyrical, and few are strictly speaking ballads. No matter, it`s a perfect title for this unique venture, which upset a lot of august Augustan critics - though no doubt a smaller proportion of readers were quite so perplexed - back in 1798.
The four poems by Coleridge are The Dungeon, The Nightingale (in their different ways, remarkable both as poems and as polemics), The Foster-Mother`s Tale, and the still astounding The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere, with its ever-haunting line which never fails to excite and lure this reader in:

There was a Ship, quoth he

Yes? Then do tell us about it!
Coleridge`s strange tale in verse must have startled its first readers, some oddly reluctant for one reason or another to read the rest of the poems, others no doubt devouring them in one sitting.
The other nineteen poems, often only a page long, are by WW. It`s fascinating to see the very different sensibilities of the two then-friends (who later, alas, fell out), with Will the idealistic nature-lover writing in a loose, chatty style, Sam more the mystic, strange tensions at play in his already intense poetry.
There are one or two poems about vagrants and prisoners here, both poets evincing a gratifying sympathy for those fallen on hard times. There is of course also much description of the natural world, though never too effusive or flowery. All tends to be condensed, conversational.
In later revisions, the poem order was altered, and Coleridge`s opening maritime epic was given a spell-check, as well as an alteration and reordering of many lines and stanzas. I slightly prefer this original (which is not the version usually anthologised) with its archaic spelling and snappier dialogue: `Now wherefore stoppest me?` as against the later amendation `Now wherefore stoppst thou me?`. Nor do we have to put up with the now jarringly arch first use of `eftsoons` in this spiky earlier version.
From the Quantocks up to the Lakeland fells, STC & WW rambled and roved and dreamed up the quietly devastating, arguably still subversive poems that make up this landmark in the poetry, literature and culture of England.

A sadder and a wiser man
He rose the morrow morn
0Comment| 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 22 January 2015
Essential for all lovers of language, beauty, grace and soul. In their time, Wordsworth and Coleridge were more than daringly bold or strange - this was revolutionary. Taking poetry back to the more earthy language of nature, with a deeply romantic humanity; these poems are more than simply verse. Their power still resonates across the centuries, and will be forever loved.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 25 October 2013
Lyrical Ballads is really a collection of poems by Wordsworth. The contribution by Coleridge is minor although in itself a major poem. For me this was a good introduction to the Lake Poets (in conjunction with York Notes).
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 10 November 2013
Recommend it if you are an A Level student studying lyrical ballads. Contains all of the poems that my class are studying, small but really good
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 20 July 2015
Nicely uncluttered edition ... no distracting editors notes within the text, just a couple of pages at the end to set the work in context.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 21 April 2015
a few iliked , but not what I expected from the authors..
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 26 August 2014
Bought for A level
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 20 June 2013
New to Wordsworth. Wasn't sure which to buy. This fine, but would recommend getting fuller later volume of his work.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse