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Gerard Manley Hopkins

(28 July 1844 – 8 June 1889 / Stratford, Essex)

Quotations

  • ''A great work by an Englishman is like a great battle won by England. It is an unfading bay tree.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Oct. 13, 1886, to Robert Bridges. Gerard Manley Hopkins: Selected Letters, ed. Catherine Phillips (1991).
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  • ''The Indian gods are imposing, the Greek gods are not. Indeed they are not brave, not self-controlled, they have no manners, they are not gentlemen and ladies.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Oct. 23, 1886, to Robert Bridges. Gerard Manley Hopkins: Selected Letters, ed. Catherine Phillips (1991).
  • ''I always knew in my heart Walt Whitman's mind to be more like my own than any other man's living. As he is a very great scoundrel this is not a pleasant confession.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Oct. 18, 1882, to Robert Bridges. Gerard Manley Hopkins: Selected Letters, ed. Catherine Phillips (1991).
  • ''I hold with the old-fashioned criticism that Browning is not really a poet, that he has all the gifts but the one needful and the pearls without the string; rather one should say raw nuggets and rough diamonds.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Oct. 17, 1881, to Richard Watson Dixon. Gerard Manley Hopkins: Selected Letters, ed. Catherine Phillips (1991).
  • ''It kills me to be time's eunuch and never to beget.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Sept. 1, 1885, to Robert Bridges. Gerard Manley Hopkins: Selected Letters, ed. Catherine Phillips (1991).
  • ''Horrible to say, in a manner I am a Communist.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Aug. 2, 1871, to Robert Bridges. Poems and Prose of Gerard Manley Hopkins, ed. W.H. Gardner (1953).
  • ''The effect of studying masterpieces is to make me admire and do otherwise.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Sept. 25, 1888, to Robert Bridges. Poems and Prose of Gerard Manley Hopkins, ed. W.H. Gardner (1953).
  • ''Beauty ... is a relation, and the apprehension of it a comparison.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. On the Origin of Beauty: A Platonic Dialogue. Poems and Prose of Gerard Manley Hopkins, ed. W.H. Gardner (1953).
  • ''I am surprised you shd. say fancy and aesthetic tastes have led me to my present state of mind: these wd. be better satisfied in the Church of England, for bad taste is always meeting one in the accessories of Catholicism.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. letter, Oct. 16, 1866, to his father, Manley Hopkins. Poems and Prose of Gerard Manley Hopkins, ed. W.H. Gardner (1953).
  • ''I find myself both as man and as myself something more determined and distinctive, at pitch, more distinctive and higher pitched than anything else I see.''
    Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889), British poet, Jesuit priest. Comments on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola. Poems and Prose of Gerard Manley Hopkins, ed. W.H. Gardner (1953). Written in 1880, during a spiritual retreat at Liverpool.

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The Lantern out of Doors

Sometimes a lantern moves along the night,
That interests our eyes. And who goes there?
I think; where from and bound, I wonder, where,
With, all down darkness wide, his wading light?

Men go by me whom either beauty bright
In mould or mind or what not else makes rare:
They rain against our much-thick and marsh air
Rich beams, till death or distance buys them quite.

[Hata Bildir]