By W. K. Thomas
Wordsworth depicted Newton, as Roubiliac may possibly have performed in his statue of him, as voyaging, in ecstasy, via God's sensorium. within the Prelude passage from which the identify A brain For Ever Voyaging is derived, and in quite a few others portraying Newton and technological know-how, Wordsworth turns out to have written for 2 audiences, most of the people and a way smaller, deepest viewers, whereas trying to bring up the minds of either to God. Like Pope ahead of him, Wordsworth completed "What oft was once wrought, yet ne'er so good exprest."
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Extra resources for A Mind For Ever Voyaging: Wordsworth at Work Portraying Newton and Science
Newton evidently meant so much to Wordsworth, and to his countrymen in the poet's own day, that there was no need to mention him by name. He was himself a brooding presence whenever discoveries in science were mentioned, especially discoveries which further elevated the mind to a contemplation of God. Newton's influence in other important passages of Wordsworth has already been detailed by scholars. In fact a number of them have suggested that Newton provided the framework for much of Wordsworth's description of the grander aspects of the universe.
Glover had celebrated Newton's prismatic analysis as particularly magnificent: But, O bright angel of the lamp of day, How shall the muse display his greatest toil? Let her plunge deep in Aganippe's waves, Or in Castalia's ever-flowing stream, That reinspired she may sing to thee, How Newton dar'd advent'rous to unbraid The yellow tresses of thy shining hair. Or did'st thou gracious leave thy radiant sphere, And to his hand thy lucid splendours give, T' unweave the light-diffusing wreath, and part The blended glories of thy golden plumes?
87 And Professor Schneider suggests an even more pervasive influence: "Newton's Cambridge is probably in part responsible for the fact that Wordsworth's poetry is haunted by the sun, moon and stars. "88 Need it be added that it was 40 A MIND FOR EVER VOYAGING in accounting for those phenomena that the philosophical Newton had elevated his mind, and the mind of those who followed his gaze, to God? Kinship With that philosopher it would appear that Wordsworth felt a certain kinship. Such a comment may well seem strange, in view of the humility with which Wordsworth asked, "What would have been the use of my praising such men as Newton?