Hyperion: A Romance
- Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth

Poets Featured with External Resources

Other Works in the Collection by the Photographer(s)

Related Books by Photographic Process

Song of the Bell (Albumen prints)

Commentary

Though not strictly photopoetry, Hyperion was one of the most successful and important photobooks involving both a renowned poet and photographer, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Francis Frith. Hyperion is the first photographically illustrated novel in the English language, though its frequent recourse to poetry – both in quotations from known poets and what appears to be German folk verse, and as a subject within the novel – makes it photopoetically relevant. Again, the use of an epigraph drawn from the text is revealing. ‘“I am persuaded,” said Flemming, “that in order fully to understand and feel the popular poetry of Germany, one must be familiar with the German landscape.”’ This quotation reflects a number of important aspects of nineteenth-century photopoetry, including the usurpation of the authorical role of poet by photographer, and the use of literary scaffolding to verify the photographer’s work as ‘art’. Similarly, the use of photographs to document a fictional narrative is perhaps a more obvious blurring of fact and fiction than the use of landscape photographs to document rural poetry, though both models blur the dynamics of writing, reading, seeing, and photographing in nineteenth-century photopoetry.

Book Details

Author: Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
Title: Hyperion: A Romance
Publication Year: 1865
Poets Featured: Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth
Photographers Featured: Frith, Francis
Subjects: Europe, Description and travel, Fiction
Photographic process: Albumen prints

This book can be found in the University of St Andrews Library catalogue HERE

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With Wordsworth in England (Description and travel)

Legends and Memories of Scotland (Description and travel)