William Wordsworth

Helen Darbishire and Ernest De Selincourt (eds), The Poetical Works of William Wordsworth, Vol. 3: Miscellaneous Sonnets; Memorials of Various Tours; Poems to National Independence and Liberty; The Egyptian Maid; The River Duddon Series; The White Doe and Other Narrative Poems; Ecclesiastical Sonnets (Second Edition)

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Critical ApparatusXXX

[Composed August, 1802.—Published 1807.]

  • Critical Apparatus1It is a beauteous evening, calm and free,
  • 2The holy time is quiet as a Nun
  • 3Breathless with adoration; the broad sun
  • 4Is sinking down in its tranquillity;
  • Critical Apparatus5The gentleness of heaven broods o'er the Sea:
  • Critical Apparatus6Listen! the mighty Being is awake,
  • 7And doth with his eternal motion make
  • 8A sound like thunder—everlastingly.
  • Critical Apparatus9Dear Child! dear Girl! that walkest with me here,
  • Critical Apparatus10If thou appear untouched by solemn thought,
  • 11Thy nature is not therefore less divine:
  • 12Thou liest in Abraham's bosom all the year;
  • 13And worshipp'st at the Temple's inner shrine,
  • 14God being with thee when we know it not.

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Critical Apparatus
p. 17. XXX. It is a beauteous evening, etc.: "This was composed on the beach near Calais in the autumn of 1802."—I. F. The appcrit. exhibits several unsuccessful attempts of W.'s to improve the text, with a fortunate return to earlier readings.
Critical Apparatus
XXX. 1 so MS.-1832, 1845:
  • Air sleeps,—from strife or stir the clouds are free, 1837–8
  • A fairer face of Evening cannot be, 1840
Critical Apparatus
5 broods o'er 1836: is with MS.M: is on 1807–1832
Critical Apparatus
6 Listen MS.-1832, 1840; But list 1837–8
Critical Apparatus
9–10 so 1807–32, 1840 (but appear'st), 1845.
  • Dear Child! dear happy Girl! if thou appear
  • Heedless—untouch'd with awe or serious thought 1837
So 1838 but Heedless—unawed, untouch'd with etc.
Critical Apparatus
9. Dear Child] i.e. Caroline, W.'s daughter. Cf. D. W.'s Journal for Aug. 1802: "The weather was very hot. We walked by the sea shore almost every evening with Annette and Caroline, or William and I alone … . It was beautiful on a calm night … . Caroline was delighted."
Critical Apparatus
  • Thou dost not seem to heed these things one jot,
  • I see it, nor is this a grief of mine;
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