Lyrical Ballads

Lyrical Ballads was written jointly by Wordsworth and Coleridge: the two poets agreed to divide the task of composing the volume: Wordsworth wrote about common events in simple languages and Coleridge wrote about exotic or fantastic nature. The Lyrical Ballads is considered the English Romantic Manifesto for it's famous preface by Wordsworth where all his major ideas are described and explained: the choice of ordinary subjects and ordinary language for creating an accessible poetry for all man; the theory of the poet as man that is more affected by what he experiences and is able to communicate his experiences to other men; and how poetry is the "spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings" originating from "emotion recollected in tranquility". Most of Lyrical Ballads deal with nature that can mean several thing: nature as the countryside (mountain, lakes, woods are often opposed to the noise and confusion of the town), nature as a source of inspiration (revolutionary way of writing about nature, the description of the relationship between nature and man), and nature as a life-force (where the lake, fields etc. seem to have a life their own). He substitutes the great epics of the past with shorter epic tales of simple country folk. The county person for Wordsworth, can teach lessons that the wisest philosopher cannot.

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