There appeared a host of writers of moderate talent like John Clare, Thomas Love Peacock, Walter Savage Landor and Thomas Hood. The result was that from 1820 till the publication of Tennyson’s first important work in 1833 English poetry had fallen into the hands of mediocrities. It was in fact by the publication of his two volumes in 1842 that Tennyson’s position was assured as, in Wordsworth’s language, “decidedly the greatest of our living poets.” Browning’s recognition by the public came about the same time, with the appearance of Dramatic Lyrics (1842), although Paracelsus and Sordello had already been published. The early Victorian poetry which started in 1833, therefore, came to its own, in the year 1842.
To which the whole creation moves.
And God fulfills himself in many ways
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world,
Slow-dropping, veils of thinnest lawn did go;
And some thro’ wavering lights and shadows broke,
Rolling a slumberous sheet of foam below.
They saw the gleaming river seaward flow
From the inner land; for off, three mountain tops,
Three silent pinnacles of aged snow,
Stood sunset flush’d and dew’d with showery drops.
Up clomb the shadowy pine above the woven copse.
And day’s at the morn;
Morning’s at seven;
The hill side’s dew pearled;
The lark’s on the wing;
The snails on the thorn,
God’s in his heaven—
All’s right with the world.
The best is yet to be.
The last of life, for which the first was made.
All the heart and the soul and the senses for ever in joy.
How charged with punishment the scroll:
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul!