Elegiac

by John J. Miller on May 18, 2013 · 0 comments

in Blog Posts

  • SumoMe

This weekend’s WSJ carries my article on what was once arguably the most famous poem in the world: “Elegy Written in a Country Church-Yard,” by Thomas Gray:

“Gray’s Elegy,” wrote Leslie Stephen (the father of Virginia Woolf), “includes more familiar phrases than any poem of equal length in the language.” Its 32 stanzas burst with celebrated passages: “The Curfew tolls the knell of parting day”; “Full many a flower is born to blush unseen”; “Far from the madding crowd’s ignoble strife”; and so on. Robert L. Mack, Gray’s definitive biographer, has observed that a recent edition of the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations draws from 15 stanzas and reproduces 13 of them whole.

For the full text of the poem, go here.

Gray's Elegy

Previous post:

Next post: