The Castle of Indolence
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The Castle of Indolence is a poem written by James Thomson, a Scottish poet of the 18th century, in 1748.
According to the Nuttall Encyclopedia, the Castle of Indolence is "a place in which the dwellers live amid luxurious delights, to the enervation of soul and body." The poem is written in Spenserian stanzas at a time when they were considered outdated and initiated an interest in this stanza form which would later have a strong influence upon the English Romantic poets Lord Byron, William Wordsworth, and John Keats.
Washington Irving quotes the first four lines of Canto I, VI (lines 46-49 in external link excerpt below) from the poem in his tale, "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow". In fact, the quotation from 'The Castle of Indolence' opens the story and sets the scene.
46 A pleasing land of drowsy-hed it was,
47 Of dreams that wave before the half-shut eye;
48 And of gay castles in the clouds that pass,
49 Forever flushing round a summer-sky
- Canto I, XXX leads Chapter XIII of The Mysteries of Udolpho.
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