Wednesday, February 02, 2005

My "Obsession"

So I just read Matthew Arnold's The Scholar-Gypsy. When Prof. Kuin told us in tutorial that this is a poem about Oxford, and all Oxford students know and love it, my ears pricked up. You see, I have a fascination (it's probably better to call it an obsession) with Oxford University. I was in England this past May and spent some time in Oxford and fell in love. I think this would happen to anyone interested in history (or is a nerd like me, and passionate about education).

This poem tells the interesting story of a student at Oxford who left the school and joined the Gypsies. He promised to tell the world all the wonderful things about the Gypsies (about their powers of imagination and unorthodox way of see the world), but he never came back to tell the story. He was often spotted here and there, but never stayed long in one place. What makes The Scholar-Gypsy so cool is that it names many places and landmarks in Oxford like Godstow Bridge and Christ Church Hall, among others. I guess that's why Oxford students love it so much. I don't feel there is any point in giving quotes from the poem, it's not that long, only 250 lines (that's like a couple of pages from The Iliad). I suggest that you read it, it's a great example of a poem from the Romantic period.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

RK said:

Actually, it's Victorian, not Romantic. If you read some Keats or Wordsworth, you can tell the difference. Victorians tend to discuss feelings more directly, more "sincerely". Glad you enjoyed it. Wonderful poem.

February 4, 2005 at 5:42 AM  
Blogger Maya B said...

Oxford seems like a good obsession to me!!

P.S. I saw how excited you got in class when Prof.Kuin mentioned Oxford so you CAN'T fool ANYONE! hehehe

February 4, 2005 at 7:25 PM  
Blogger The Poole Boy said...

I am very glad to hear that “The Scholar-Gypsy” brought you so much joy. I bet that after hearing that the topic of the piece was Oxford that your mind was flooded with memories. (it was the same feeling that I felt when I rediscovered (my)the Shakespearian sonnet after so many years—one of my posts). That is always a great feeling to have. The references to actual English landmarks leads me to wonder if any part of this tale is based on historical fact.

February 7, 2005 at 6:37 PM  
Blogger ultrastar175g said...

Hi there Sidd

Thanks for dropping by my blog! I didn't realise you had come to England recently or gone to Oxford. I know quite a few Oxford students - I shall test them about The Scholar-Gypsy and see if they know it.

The only thing I hate about Oxford is that once on the ring-road, I can never get off. I can spend hours and hours circling the city and never finding my exit home.

Cheers for now


November 2, 2005 at 10:06 AM  

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