When the young minister-poet Edward Taylor moved to Westfield, Massachusetts, in November of 1671, he had written several poems. When he died there fifty-eight years later, in addition to thousands of sermons and more than 2,000 manuscript pages of original prose, he had composed some 40,000 lines of poetry. For two of his poetic projects in particular, Taylor is considered - with Anne Bradstreet - one of British North America's most accomplished poets. Daniel Patterson's Edward Taylor's Gods Determinations and Preparatory Meditations: A Critical Edition reconsiders the texts of Taylor's two major works for the first time since Donald Stanford's 1960 edition. This volume also offers the first complete text of all the Meditations that Taylor transcribed into his Poetical Works manuscript. The restoration of Taylor's text, however, is the most enduring value of this edition, which is designed to become the new standard edition of these poems. The scores of substantive variants and the hundreds of variants in matters of punctuation and capitalization existing between the Patterson and Stanford texts are fully reported in the back of the volume, as are all editorial emendations. Ultimately, Patterson's accurate, restored text shows Taylor to have been much more in control of his art than has previously been reported. The Introduction provides a comprehensive overview of Taylor's life and work as well as a thorough discussion of the important critical approaches to the poetry. Using a narrative approach, the Introduction weaves what is known about the poet's life into a discussion of the development and career of his art. Together with the list of works cited, the Introduction provides any scholar, teacher, or student with a thorough and solid grounding in what is known and thought about Taylor's work.
|Publication date:||30th November 2002|
|Publisher:||Kent State University Press|
|Categories:||Literary studies: poetry & poets, Literary studies: c 1500 to c 1800,|
Daniel Patterson is a member of the English faculty at Central Michigan University. His research focuses on Colonial American studies and the history of American nature writing. He is co-editor of new editions of Susan Fenimore Cooper's Rural Hours and Essays on Nature and Landscape, as well as Susan Fenimore Cooper: New Essays on Rural Hours and Other Works and Reading the Earth: New Directions in the Study of Literature and EnvironmentMore About