Austen Saunders

Discovering poetry: Lord Byron’s myth-making through verse

11 September 2013 9:00

‘So, we’ll go no more a roving’ So, we’ll go no more a roving So late into the night, Though…

Is England too good for the English? Shakespeare’s John of Gaunt seems to think so

26 August 2013 9:30

From Shakespeare’s Richard II, lines spoken by John of Gaunt. This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle, This earth…

Discovering Poetry: Thomas Traherne’s life lessons

19 August 2013 10:40

From ‘Wonder’, by Thomas Traherne How like an angel came I down! How bright are all things here! When first…

Which Ulysses is the most heroic?

29 July 2013 15:13

From ‘Ulysses’ by Alfred, Lord Tennyson                                     Come, my friends, ‘Tis not too late to seek a newer world. Push…

Alexander Pope, mock-epic, modernity and misogyny

16 July 2013 12:01

from The Rape of the Lock And now, unveiled, the toilet stands displayed, Each silver vase in mystic order laid.…

Laughing at sin

1 July 2013 11:27

Francis Quarles, An emblem on books ‘The world’s a book, writ by the eternal art Of the great Maker, printed…

To their coy mistresses: two poems about the arts of seduction

17 June 2013 11:18

Andrew Marvell, from ‘To His Coy Mistress’ But at my back I always hear Times winged chariot hurrying near: And…

Discovering poetry: John Donne, from deviant to Dean of St. Paul’s

3 June 2013 12:43

Holy Sonnet 7, John Donne At the round earth’s imagined corners, blow Your trumpets, angels, and arise, arise From death,…

The Glorious Revolution and small ‘c’ conservatism

13 May 2013 9:45

From a dialogue  between a non-juring clergyman and his wife by Edward ‘Ned’ Ward Wife: Why will you prove so obstinate,…

In defence of William Shakespeare’s nonsense

29 April 2013 10:43

‘It was a lover and his lass’ from As You Like It It was a lover and his lassWith a…

Falling out of love, William Shakespeare’s Sonnet 97 – discovering poetry

15 April 2013 9:07

How like a winter hath my absence been From thee, the pleasure of the fleeting year! What freezings have I…

John Milton’s ambiguous love for Oliver Cromwell – Discovering poetry

2 April 2013 10:28

‘To Oliver Cromwell’ Cromwell, our chief of men, who through a cloud Not of war only, but detractions rude, Guided…

Was Katherine Philips a lesbian love poet?

18 March 2013 9:58

To my Excellent Lucasia , on our Friendship. I did not live until this time Crowned my felicity – When…

Discovering poetry: Samuel Daniel and the art of outliving death

4 March 2013 16:52

from Delia When winter snows upon thy golden hairs, And frost of age hath nipped thy flowers near; When dark…

Discovering poetry: how the Psalms made the English

19 February 2013 11:14

Psalm 42, verses 1-8 Philip Sidney                                         Miles Coverdale Miles Coverdale’s translation of the psalms was among the first fruit of…

Discovering poetry: John Dryden, Jacobite superstar

4 February 2013 9:41

From Dryden’s translation of Virgil’s Aeneid Arms and the man I sing who forced by fate And haughty Juno’s unrelenting…

Discovering poetry: Henry VIII’s Camelot

21 January 2013 10:23

‘Pastime with good company’, attributed to Henry VIII Pastime with good company I love and shall until I die. Grudge…

Discovering poetry: George Herbert’s ‘Prayer’ and the beauty of holiness

7 January 2013 10:00

‘Prayer’ Prayer the Church’s banquet, angels’ age, God’s breath in man returning to his birth, The soul in paraphrase, heart…

Why Dr Faustus’ dark obsessions still resonate

17 December 2012 10:43

Faustus to Helen of Troy from Doctor Faustus, by Christopher Marlowe Was this the face that launched a thousand ships?…

300 years of hating party politics

3 December 2012 9:37

‘Whig and Tory Scratch and Bite’, by Aaron Hill Whig and Tory scratch and bite, Just as hungry dogs we…

The Atlantic, the ocean that made the modern world

26 November 2012 11:31

Just as the classical world was built around the Mediterranean, the modern world was built around the Atlantic. The Romans…

Do you wish you were far from the madding crowd?

19 November 2012 14:20

From ‘Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard’ ‘The curfew tolls the knell of parting day, The lowing herd wind slowly…

William Rowley and the death of Prince Henry – poetry

5 November 2012 10:26

‘To the Grave’ Unclasp thy womb, thou mortuary shrine, And take the worst part of the best we had. Thou…

The shock value of John Wilmot, earl of Rochester

15 October 2012 17:26

‘The Maidenhead’ Have you not in a chimney seen A sullen faggot wet and green, How coyly it receives the…

William Shakespeare and the pursuit of human happiness

1 October 2012 16:51

‘Under the greenwood tree’ from As You Like It AMIENS: Under the greenwood tree Who loves to lies with me, And…