Matthew Arnold cytaty

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Matthew Arnold

Data urodzenia: 24. Grudzień 1822
Data zgonu: 15. Kwiecień 1888

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Matthew Arnold – angielski poeta i krytyk kulturalny; pracował jako inspektor szkolny. Jego ojcem był historyk i pedagog Thomas Arnold.

Absolwent Oksfordu. Najlepsze dzieła stworzył przed czterdziestym rokiem życia, kiedy to zwrócił się bardziej w stronę krytyki literackiej i kulturalnej. W jego poezji widać wpływy Williama Wordswortha, czego zresztą sam Arnold nie ukrywał. W latach 1867-1869 napisał ogólnokrytyczne dzieło Culture and Anarchy, w którym po raz pierwszy określił część wiktoriańskiego społeczeństwa mianem "filistrów" w sensie ludzi pogardzających intelektem, sztuką i pięknem na rzecz materialnie wyrażonego dobrobytu i kiczu.

Poeta rozpoczął swoją karierę literacką jeszcze w szkole, zdobywając nagrodę za poemat Alaric at Rome. Do najbardziej znanych wierszy Arnolda należy poemat epicki Sohrab i Rustum, opublikowany w 1853.

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Cytaty Matthew Arnold

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„Bóg nie może być wszędzie, dlatego wynalazł matkę.“

— Matthew Arnold
Źródło: Leksykon złotych myśli, wyboru dokonał Krzysztof Nowak, Warszawa 1998.

„And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: Ah, love, let us be true To one another! for the world, which seems To lie before us like a land of dreams, So various, so beautiful, so new, Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light, Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain; And we are here as on a darkling plain Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight, Where ignorant armies clash by night. St. 4

„We cannot kindle when we will
The fire that in the heart resides“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: We cannot kindle when we will The fire that in the heart resides, The spirit bloweth and is still, In mystery our soul abides; — But tasks, in hours of insight willed, Can be through hours of gloom fulfilled. "Morality" (1852), st. 1

„The what you have to say depends on your age.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: Had Shakespeare and Milton lived in the atmosphere of modern feeling, had they had the multitude of new thoughts and feelings to deal with a modern has, I think it likely the style of each would have been far less curious and exquisite. For in a man style is the saying in the best way what you have to say. The what you have to say depends on your age. In the 17th century it was a smaller harvest than now, and sooner to be reaped; and therefore to its reaper was left time to stow it more finely and curiously. Still more was this the case in the ancient world. The poet's matter being the hitherto experience of the world, and his own, increases with every century. Letter to Arthur Hugh Clough (December 1847/early 1848)

„What actions are the most excellent? Those, certainly, which most powerfully appeal to the great primary human affections: to those elementary feelings which subsist permanently in the race, and which are independent of time.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: What actions are the most excellent? Those, certainly, which most powerfully appeal to the great primary human affections: to those elementary feelings which subsist permanently in the race, and which are independent of time. These feelings are permanent and the same; that which interests them is permanent and the same also. "Preface to Poems" (1853)

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„Be neither saint nor sophist-led, but be a man.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: The sophist sneers: Fool, take Thy pleasure, right or wrong! The pious wail: Forsake A world these sophists throng! Be neither saint nor sophist-led, but be a man. Act I, sc. ii

„Who saw life steadily, and saw it whole.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: But be his My special thanks, whose even-balanced soul, From first youth tested up to extreme old age, Business could not make dull, nor passion wild; Who saw life steadily, and saw it whole. "To a Friend" (1849), line 9-12

„Thou waitest for the spark from heaven!“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: Thou waitest for the spark from heaven! and we, Light half-believers of our casual creeds, Who never deeply felt, nor clearly will’d, Whose insight never has borne fruit in deeds, Whose vague resolves never have been fulfill’d; For whom each year we see Breeds new beginnings, disappointments new; Who hesitate and falter life away, And lose to-morrow the ground won to-day— Ah! do not we, wanderer! await it too? St. 18

„The poet's matter being the hitherto experience of the world, and his own, increases with every century.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: Had Shakespeare and Milton lived in the atmosphere of modern feeling, had they had the multitude of new thoughts and feelings to deal with a modern has, I think it likely the style of each would have been far less curious and exquisite. For in a man style is the saying in the best way what you have to say. The what you have to say depends on your age. In the 17th century it was a smaller harvest than now, and sooner to be reaped; and therefore to its reaper was left time to stow it more finely and curiously. Still more was this the case in the ancient world. The poet's matter being the hitherto experience of the world, and his own, increases with every century. Letter to Arthur Hugh Clough (December 1847/early 1848)

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„Is it so small a thing
To have enjoy’d the sun“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: Is it so small a thing To have enjoy’d the sun, To have lived light in the spring, To have loved, to have thought, to have done; To have advanc’d true friends, and beat down baffling foes? Act I, sc. ii

„The pursuit of perfection, then, is the pursuit of sweetness and light. He who works for sweetness and light, works to make reason and the will of God prevail.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: The pursuit of perfection, then, is the pursuit of sweetness and light. He who works for sweetness and light, works to make reason and the will of God prevail. He who works for machinery, he who works for hatred, works only for confusion. Culture looks beyond machinery, culture hates hatred; culture has one great passion, the passion for sweetness and light. Ch. I, Sweetness and Light

„I knew they lived and moved
Trick'd in disguises, alien to the rest
Of men, and alien to themselves — and yet
The same heart beats in every human breast!“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: Alas! is even love too weak To unlock the heart, and let it speak? Are even lovers powerless to reveal To one another what indeed they feel? I knew the mass of men conceal'd Their thoughts, for fear that if reveal'd They would by other men be met With blank indifference, or with blame reproved; I knew they lived and moved Trick'd in disguises, alien to the rest Of men, and alien to themselves — and yet The same heart beats in every human breast! " The Buried Life http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/arnold/writings/buriedlife.html" (1852), st. 2

„For both were faiths, and both are gone.“

— Matthew Arnold
Context: Forgive me, masters of the mind! At whose behest I long ago So much unlearnt, so much resign'd — I come not here to be your foe! I seek these anchorites, not in ruth, To curse and to deny your truth; Not as their friend, or child, I speak! But as, on some far northern strand, Thinking of his own Gods, a Greek In pity and mournful awe might stand Before some fallen Runic stone — For both were faiths, and both are gone.

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