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New Music Release: Howard Skempton – 'Rime of the Ancient Mariner'

Howard Skempton – 'Rime of the Ancient Mariner'

Perfectly crafted, deceptively simplistic and distinctively individual, Howard Skempton's compositions have a soundworld all of their own. This new full-length album on NMC perfectly displays his experimental, yet sonorous and tonal music. Skempton takes on Coleridge's epic poem 'The Rime of the Ancient Mariner' and brings it to life, using just solo voice (baritone) and small chamber ensemble. The result is a stunning, dark and hypnotic journey led by the almost constant, magnetic presence of Roderick Williams, for whose voice and dramatic capabilities the piece was conceived.

Only the Sound Remains takes its name from the opening line of The Mill-Water by English poet Edward Thomas. The piece is an evocation of loss and decay, where textures, and melodies mysteriously recur, while others simply fade beautifully out of aural reach. It is written for sixteen players, including solo viola. This is a stunning premiere recording of two recent works by one of Britain's finest living composers.

Release date: 21 April
Details of recording and how to purchase it at

Friends of Coleridge AGM

Friends of Coleridge Annual General Meeting

Saturday 18 March, 10.30am, Coleridge Cottage, Nether Stowey.

All members welcome.

Coleridge Lectures - Bristol Ideas Festival 20 and 27 April, 3 May

Coleridge Lectures - Bristol Ideas Festival 20 and 27 April, 3 May

Martha Spurrier: Hate, Hostility and Human Rights – A Brave New World
Thu 20 April, 18:30 - 19:30, Wills Memorial Building. Free Admission

Rachel Hewitt: The Revolution of Feeling in the 1790s
Thu 27 April, 18:30 - 19:30, Wills Memorial Building. Free Admission

Gareth Stedman Jones: Rediscovering the Nineteenth Century Marx
Wed 03 May, 18:30 - 19:30, Wills Memorial Building. Free Admission

Click here for details

Symposium: Historical Poetics in the 18th And 19th Centuries, Connecticut, November 2017

Historical Poetics In The Eighteenth And Nineteenth Centuries
A Symposium at Connecticut College, New London, Connecticut
November 3–4, 2017

Call For Papers

Keynote Speakers: Virginia Jackson and Suvir Kaul

The wager of this symposium is simple: historical poetics needs the eighteenth century, and eighteenth-century studies needs historical poetics. For over a decade, a group of nineteenth-century scholars has been practicing historical poetics, building arguments around the core insight that ideas about what poetry is and what it means to make and read it change over time—that these are ineluctably historical ideas. A group of eighteenth-century and Romantic specialists is now asking whether and how this approach applies to pre-1800 poetry. Eighteenth-century verse was produced before lyricization, before poetry as such was equated with the lyric, and its students have long recognized that limited modern ideas about poetry cannot do justice to this period's proliferation of forgotten poets and genres, tropes and terms. Yet old historicisms die hard, and form-minded scholarship in eighteenth-century studies has been uneven in exploring verse that departs from the supposedly universal norms of post-Romantic lyric.

This symposium aims to bring together eighteenth- and nineteenth-century scholars for shared methodological reflection and conversation. How might attention to eighteenth-century verse enrich or complicate recent arguments that de-center the nineteenth-century lyric? What might traditions of historicist reading in eighteenth-century studies bring to historical poetics? How might the latter reshape the former? What does it mean to do historical poetics both before and after lyricization? Symposium participants will explore such questions in a combination of traditional panels, larger round table discussions, and interactive seminars about shared readings.

We invite proposals for presentations engaging with historical poetics across the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Some papers might pursue inquiries into particular poems, techniques, trends; others might consider historical poetics itself, contextualizing the phenomenon, raising methodological problems, or imagining new critical histories. We welcome proposals for either traditional twenty-minute papers (meant for panels) or shorter methodological position papers (for roundtables). We also welcome expressions of interest from scholars who would like to participate in seminar discussions. All proposals should include a title, a brief (200-word) description of your argument and approach, and an indication of your preferred format.

Proposals should be sent to by April 15.
Questions can be addressed to Jeff Strabone at

For more information, please see the symposium website:

The two-day symposium will be held on November 3 and 4 at Connecticut College in New London, conveniently accessible by plane, train, or car.

The event will pay tribute to the legacy of Paul Fussell (1924–2012), an influential member of the college's faculty and a grandfather of historical poetics.

Organizing committee:
Anna Foy, University of Alabama in Huntsville
Meredith Martin, Princeton University
Lisa Moore, University of Texas at Austin
James Mulholland, North Carolina State University
Courtney Weiss Smith, Wesleyan University
Dustin D. Stewart, Columbia University
Jeff Strabone, Connecticut College

Join the Coleridge and Cottle Walk, Chepstow to Tintern, 22nd & 23rd April 2017

Coleridge and Cottle Walk, Chepstow to Tintern, 22nd  and 23rd April 2017
Chepstow Walking Festival 2017.

Chepstow ‘Walkers are Welcome’ is a volunteer group aiming at promoting walking in the Wye Valley. Each year its walking festival encourages both local people and visitors to discover the delights of the region.

This year the group is organising a programme of 30 walks. One should be of considerable interest to members of the Friends of Coleridge: a walk spread over two days following in footsteps of the poet on his walk from Chepstow to Tintern in 1795. He was accompanied by Joseph Cottle and the Fricker sisters.

The walk leader is Anne Rainsbury, Curator of Chepstow Museum, and she will be reading from Joseph Cottle’s account of the walk, and giving insights into the countryside that Coleridge would have experienced in 1795.

The walk was part of the 2016 Coleridge in Wales Festival, and proved so successful that it was felt it should be included in the 2017 Walking Festival.

To find out more, visit for the full programme.

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