Blake’s Letters: New Connections between Works in the Archive

By nwasamoan

Related works

The exciting recent publication of Blake’s illustrations of works by William Hayley helps to present a much fuller picture of the period from about 1800-1805 in Blake’s career, which included his conflicted personal and professional associations with Hayley, his only extended sojourn outside of London to a cottage in Felpham, and the episode of his trial for sedition. During this time, Blake’s personal, social, aesthetic, and professional interests intersect through his extensive work for Hayley and in the correspondence though which they planned and discussed these illustrations. At the moment, we are preparing a second installment of letters that will help to augment the resources available within the Archive for exploring this fascinating period in Blake’s life. We are pleased to be able to make these materials available in multiple ways for users, who we hope will benefit from the multiple ways we have prepared for them to search and browse Blake’s works and papers in the Archive.

Related Works

In addition to the full search functionality that will allow users to seek out particular images, figures, names, words, or phrases in these new and forthcoming works, users will also be able to navigate between the letters and …read more


Publication Announcement – Blake’s illustrations to works by William Hayley

By Andrea H. Everett

Little Tom the Sailor, copy 1, detail

The William Blake Archive is pleased to announce the publication of electronic editions of Blake’s illustrations to works by William Hayley, including his Essay on Sculpture, the broadside ballad Little Tom the Sailor, The Triumphs of Temper, The Life and Posthumous Writings of William Cowper, and The Life of George Romney. We are also republishing Blake’s etched and engraved illustrations to Designs to a Series of Ballads, Written by William Hayley (1802) and Hayley’s Ballads (1805). The designs and engraved texts of both sets of Ballads illustrations, as well as the new material now being published, are fully searchable.

Little Tom the Sailor, copy 1, detail

In late 1799, William Hayley was seeking an engraver to illustrate his poem Essay on Sculpture. Possibly on the advice of the sculptor John Flaxman, Hayley commissioned Blake to produce three plates. In July 1800, Blake spent much of July working on the final plate, an engraving of Hayley’s deceased son, Thomas, in Hayley’s library in the coastal village of Felpham, West Sussex. During these weeks, Hayley persuaded Blake to relocate from London to Felpham to work on a number of graphic projects. Disenchanted with his failure to …read more


Teaching Romanticism: A Beginner’s Guide

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By danielcook by Daniel Cook When I moved to Scotland last year to take up a permanent post as a Lecturer in English at the University of Dundee I inherited a popular module entitled Romantic and Gothic Literature, 1760-1830. Of course, I was mightily excited to be teaching such a module, indeed to be teaching anything as […] …read more


Five Questions: Angela Wright on Britain, France and the Gothic

By admin

Angela Wright - Britain, France and the Gothic

We on the BARS Executive are still sad that Dr Angela Wright has recently left our number in order to become a Dark Empress (OK, co-President…) of the International Gothic Association. When not reigning, she is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Sheffield and has published widely on Romantic and Gothic topics. Below, we discuss her latest book, Britain, France and the Gothic, 1764-1820: The Import of Terror, which was published by Cambridge University Press earlier this year.

1) What was the genesis of Britain, France and the Gothic, 1764-1820?

I have had a long-standing fascination with the relationship between Britain and France. This fascination first started when I took my BA in English and French, and continued when I chose to do my doctorate between an English and a French department, with supervisors in both. I have always enjoyed the best of both nations, and spent several extended periods of my twenties on and off working or studying in France. When I spent a year in France at the age of 21, for example, I was intrigued by …read more


Week 7 – "The Significance of James Macpherson’s Ossian for the Art of J.M.W.Turner"

By Katherine Fender

Professor Murdo Macdonald (University of Dundee)

This landscape painting by Turner was formerly known as “Welsh Mountain Landscape” – but does, in fact, depict a Scottish mountain scene: “The Traveller – Vide Ossian’s War of Caros” (1802).

We’re very excited to be welcoming Professor Murdo Macdonald to Romantic Realignments this week. He’s here to speak to us about the painting you see above: one which has been mistakenly claimed as a representation of Welsh – rather than Scottish – landscape for many years, and is only now being considered in relation to the Scottish legend and verse that inspired Turner to create it.


The identification earlier this year of J. M. W. Turner’s lost ‘Ossian’ painting dating from 1802 (see Macdonald and Shanes, forthcoming) provides a starting point for noting Turner’s intense engagement with poetry throughout his career and allows one to give a new reading of his later Ossian-related work ‘Staffa: Fingal’s Cave’, exhibited in 1832. The fact that Turner’s 1802 painting became detached from its title may reflect the cultural politics surrounding the reception of Macpherson’s ‘Ossian’ at the time. Turner’s painting can now take its place as part of the response to ‘Ossian’ of artists throughout Europe.

CFP Romantic Heirs: Receptions, Legacies, Dialogues Since 1900 (The University of Sheffield, 17th January 2014) – DEADLINE FOR ABSTRACTS: 30TH NOVEMBER 2013

By admin

‘To search for what you already are is the most benighted of quests, and the most fated’

– Harold Bloom, The Anxiety of Influence (1973)

We invite you to submit proposals for a conference on the legacies, receptions and dialogues of Romantic ideas, authors and works since 1900, to be held at the University of Sheffield on 17th January 2014.


Keynote Speakers: Prof. Matthew Campbell (University of York) and Prof. Michael O’Neill (Durham University)

The day also includes a special concert featuring original settings of Romantic poetry composed and performed by students of the Department of Music. See programme in full post.

Marking forty years since Bloom’s provocative study on the enduring influences of Romantic writers, the University of Sheffield invites the submission of papers for a free one day conference on the receptions, legacies and dialogues of Romantic literature. The study of Romanticism and its legacies sprawls across periods, disciplines, and forms, and this conference will contribute to growing scholarship in this field. The AHRC-funded “Romantic Heirs” project has hosted events at the University of Sheffield and the University of Durham throughout 2013 with the aim of promoting the work of postgraduate and early-career researchers interested in this …read more




By Katherine Fender

In case you missed it in emails, and with the deadline fast approaching, here’s a reminder of our Call for Postgraduate Speakers:

We warmly invite postgraduate students and early-career academics to submit 100-200 word abstracts for 20 to 30 minute papers, to take place in 2014 across a range of available dates.

Papers can focus on the art, literature, ideas and philosophies of approximately 1780-1830, but the scope is by no means restricted to this period. We are also keen to encourage an interdisciplinary, international and transhistorical approach to studies of Romanticism. Our aim is to provide a forum – within a friendly, workshop setting – in which speakers can try out both new papers and more finished pieces, and in which lively discussion can flourish.

If you would like to be considered as a postgraduate student speaker at the seminar, please submit an abstract of 100-200 words to the current convenors by 30th November 2013.

Email submissions to Katherine Fender, Sarah Goode and Honor Rieley at:

…read more


Dear Blake: Letters are the Gateway to Digital Editing

By ericloy

At the Blake Archive, graduate students–and now, undergrads, too–participate deeply in the day-to-day happenings of transcription, encoding, and editing that are typical of digital projects. This fall, the Blake Archive North Division (BAND) welcomed a rather large influx of interested students to the University of Rochester. It presented positive problem for the [distinguished, good looking, still very young, etc.] senior members of the team: what do we do with these newbies?

I was one of the greenhorns in question. Coming from Creighton University and an assistantship with The Complete Letters of Henry James project, I had some foundational experience in editing, but I was still new to the pragmatics of the digital scene. With a general strategy towards quickly training new researchers like myself, recently acquired Blake letters were distributed among the new team members. The idea was that a letter–as a short, self-contained, historical object–could provide a microcosm to the editorial process, both specific to the Blake Archive and in general to digital editing.

In many respects, the strategy has been a success. After a few months, each new member is now nearing completion of their own letter. And because of the …read more


New Issue of RaVoN – Coleridge and his Circle: New Perspectives

By admin

A new issue of Romanticism and Victorianism on the Net (No. 61) has just been published, guest-edited by Tim Fulford and focusing on Samuel Taylor Coleridge. The issue includes the following essays:

Anya Taylor – Catherine the Great: Coleridge, Byron, and Erotic Politics on the Eastern Front

Alan Bewell – Coleridge and Communication

Julia S. Carlson – Measuring Distance, Pointing Address: The Textual Geography of the ‘Poem to Coleridge’ and ‘To W. Wordsworth’

Alan Vardy – Coleridge on Broad Stand

Tim Fulford – Coleridge’s Visions of 1816: the Political Unconscious and the Poetic Fragment

Matthew Sangster – “You have not advertised out of it”: Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Francis Jeffrey on Authorship, Networks and Personalities

Tom Duggett – Southey’s “New System”: the monitorial controversy and the making of the “entire man of letters”

Nicholas Halmi – Coleridge’s Ecumenical Spinoza

…read more