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Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue Author(s): A. Dwight Culler Reviewed work(s): Source: PMLA, Vol. 90, No.

3 (May, 1975), pp. 366-385 Published by: Modern Language Association Stable URL: . Accessed: 01/09/2012 07:13
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Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

I THING IT IS WELL to be clear about ONE in discussing the poetry of Tennyson, Browning, and Arnold is that the term "dramatic monologue" was not in use during the period when the great Victorian dramatic monologues were being written. It did not come to be generally employed until the very end of the nineteenth century, and it was not firmly established as the name of a genre until the beginning of the twentieth century. It is true that Browning, in the phrase he prefixed to so many of his volumes, said that his poems were "always dramatic in principle, and so many utterances of so many imaginary persons, not mine.'l Presumably, he also called them monologues. But the two terms seem not to have been put together until 1857, when George W. Thornbury designated a group of poems in his Songs of the Cavaliers and Roundheads,Jacobite Ballads, &c. &c. as "Dramatic Monologues."2 Thornbury was writing under the influence of Browning, and as critics became more conscious of Browning's poetry and of the fact that it was giving rise to a school, they attempted to define its characteristics. A great occasion for this was the publication of The Ring and the Book in 186869. A critic of the London Quarterly Review in July 1869 contrasted the "idyllic school" of Tennyson with the "psychological school" of Browning and gave a long account of what he called the "psychological monologue." R. Buxton Forman in the Fortnightly Review spoke of "a large and what may be called dramatic use of the monologue form," and Robert Buchanan in the Athenaeum actually used the term "dramatic monologue."3 Within two years, when Rossetti's Poems of 1871 were being reviewed, it was possible for a reviewerto explain, "This form of dramatic monologue, in which a selected speaker is made to let us into the recesses of his nature and lead us along private complexities of character and history, has in modern poetry been made his own by a single writer, Mr. Robert Browning."4 Nonetheless, it was probably Tennyson's use of the term in his dedicationto LocksleyHall Sixty YearsAfter(1886) that really launched it into criticism. For from his work Stopfbrd Brooke picked it up and used it as a chapter heading in his Tennyson: His Art and Relation to Modern Life (1894). He begins: "Tennyson calls his Locksley Hall, or Sixty Years After, a 'dramatic monologue,' and it is a good name to give to a whole series of his poems, the 'trick' of which I do not quite say he invented, but which he wrought into forms so specially his own, that they stand apart from work of a similar kind in other poets. Browning also made monologues of this kind." The "trick," Brooke goes on to say, is that "one man or woman speaks, telling a tale of the past or of the present. Another person-and here the dramatic element enters-is supposed to be near at hand."5He gives as examples "Rizpah," "The Northern Farmer," "Locksley Hall," "Despair," "The First Quarrel," and "The Wreck." Three years later, the term was listed in the revised edition of Austin Dobson's Handbook of English Literature (1897) and thenceforth was the firm possession of academic critics. Tennyson knew Stopford Brooke and may well have been the source of his account of the "trick" of the dramatic monologue, but what he is quoted as saying about "Locksley Hall Sixty Years After" in the Memoir is: "A dramatic poem, and Dramatis Personae are imaginary. Since it is so much the fashion in these days to regard each poem and story as a story of the poet's life or part of it, may I not be allowed to remind my readers"6of the possibility that a poet may invent a story or gather it from other sources. Browning too says of his "Dramatic Idyls," "These [idyls] of mine are called 'Dramatic' because the story is told by some actor in it, not by the poet himself."7 For Tennyson and Browning, then, the term "dramatic" is related to their sensitivity about their private lives and their insistence that they are not speaking in their own persons.


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Brooke's idea that the dramatic element consisted in the interplay between speaker and auditor was developed and elaborated by a whole se ihs of academic critics in the early years of the twentieth century: Samuel S. Curry, Brownilng and the Dramatic Monologtue (1908), Robert H. Fletcher, "Browning's Dramatic Monologs" (1938), Claud Howard, "'The Dramatic Monologue': Its Origin and Development" (1910), and M. W. MacCallum, "The Dramatic Monologue in the Victorian Period" (1924-25). These culminated in Ina Beth Sessions' PMLA article "The Dramatic Monologue" (1947) which, in a triumph of academic formalism, listed the seven characteristics necessary for the Perfect Monologue and the lesser number required for the Imperfect Monologue, the Formal Monologue, the Approximate Monologue, and so on.8 It was against this external approach that Robert Langbaum was reacting when, in The Poetry of Experience (1957), he attempted to analyze the inner spirit of the dramatic monologue and to see it in terms of its larger cultural situation. In his view, the dramatic monologue arises when the poet, finding that the objective order of world values has broken down, attempts to create a new order based on individual experience. Initially, he does this simply by asserting his own subjectivity, but ultimately, as in the early Victorian period, he turns outward upon the world and attempts to enter into the subjectivity of others. Realizing that their experience is as valid for them as his is for him, he attempts to enlarge and multiply his being by projecting himself into the being of others. At the same time (and Langbaum perhaps too little emphasizes this) he remains sufficiently detached from his subject that, simply by the manipulation of tone, he is able to pass judgment upon it. Indeed, in the modern view, the peculiar structure of the dramatic monologue depends entirely upon this tension between sympathy and judgment-on the dramatic irony that arises from the contrast between the limited understanding the speaker has of his own words and the larger, encompassing understanding of the poet and reader. This is an attractive and persuasive theory, the only difficulty with it being that it would seem to apply with considerable force to all poetry, especially dramatic poetry, and that in its special nineteenth-century form it really applies only to


Browning. Browning, indeed, says in Pauline that such is his philosophy. "I am made up of an intensest life"-"a principle of restlessness / Which would be all, have, see, know, taste, feel, all- / This is myself" (11.268, 277-79). And in The Ring and the Book he wishes so to "project his surplusage of soul," so to "add self to self" that forms now dead may get to live again (Bk. I, 11.723-29).9 Thus, simply out of his own temperament and quite independently of any general cultural situation, his poems might well have taken this form. On the other hand, the theory does not apply so well to Arnold or Tennyson. Far from having any inclination to enter into the experience of others, they tended rather to shrink from experience, and the characters they created are largely versions of the self. Arnold created his primarily in order to repudiate them, Tennyson primarily in order to weep with them. Arnold did not write many dramatic monologues, and those of Tennyson are very different from Browning's. Beyond this, one notes that there was a parallel development in nineteenth-century fiction which has received a very differentinterpretation.Wayne Booth observes that after Flaubert and James it became critical dogma that it was better for the novelist to "show" than to "tell" his story.10If he were a serious artist he would eliminate his own voice and allow his characters to speak for themselves, or he would tell the whole story from the point of view of a single consciousness. Booth is much concerned with the problem this creates for the artist, particularly when he entrusts his story to an "unreliable narrator," and he shows that by one means or another the novelist's voice normally does remain present in the fiction in order to guide the reader to a correct judgment. By this means Booth is able to give a much more balanced account of sympathy and judgment (that is, of "showing" and "telling") than Langbaum does. But he also attributesthis development to different reasons. It does not represent a desire on the part of the novelist to enter imaginatively into his characters and see things from their point of viewwhich presumably George Eliot did just as well as James-but simply a desire for a more objective technique. It is a part of the movement toward objectivity and symbolism which we find in all forms in the post-Romantic period. Thus, the dramatic monologue, though initially made possible by an impulse of sympathy, is ultimately


and Monodrama the DramaticMonologue

imagine what it was that Hector said to Andromache, or how Sulla addressed his troops, or what Vercingetorix may have said on laying down his arms. But it was also an exercise in decorum, for it was necessary to consider what kinds of arguments and sentiments would be appropriate to this or that person and the nature of the language in which he would utter them. "For," as Hermogenes said, "the speech of youth is not that of age, nor the speech of joy that of grief."'2This need to adapt one's thoughts and language to the character of the person made the exercise valuable in the study of letter writing. As Donald L. Clark writes in his study of ancient rhetoric in English Renaissance education, In order to teach boys to write a letter in a style adaptedto the writer,the recipient,and the circumin stances, Erasmusrecommends his most influential
De conscribendis epistolis (1521) the writing of letters which, like the Heroides of Ovid, are prosopopoeiae.

established by a penchant toward judgment. Its essence is that it is a fragmentary form in which the reader participates in the creation of meaning by tacitly supplying the other side of the dialogue, the antecedent and concluding actions. It is an open, ironic form in which the dramatic element is not, as Tennyson and Browning thought, the interplay between the poet and the speaker, or, as Brooke thought, between the speaker and the listener, but between the speaker and the reader. Needless to say, these views are not ultimately at variance, since the reader often projects upon the listener his own thoughts, which presumably ought to be the same as those of the poet. Langbaum's view has had a very fruitful effect upon the study of the dramatic monologue. The difficulty with it is that, once accepted, it creates a tendency to assimilate all poems with a single dramatic speaker to the ironic model. It is assumed that every speaker is an "unreliablenarrator" and that the reader's task is to reconstruct the truth from the telltale hints the speaker unconsciously lets fall. Hence the "revisionist" readings of Browning's "Count Gismond" and Tennyson's "Ulysses""1and the lack of sympathy for poems like "Locksley Hall" which do not lend themselves to an ironic reading. But actually, in the early nineteenth century, before the Browningesque model was firmly established, poems with a single dramatic speaker were written on several different models, some of which were quite different from that developed by Langbaum. One indication of this is the fact that historically they did not arise, as Langbaum asserts, out of the Romantic lyric of experience. That lyric may ultimately have provided them with much of what is valuable in their substance, but formally they arose out of two related genres, the monodrama and the prosopopoeia. Though it is the former that is our principal concern here, let us spend a moment upon the latter. The prosopopoeia, or impersonation, is an ancient rhetorical form in which a person, historical or imaginary, is represented as actually speaking. It is fully treated by Quintilian because it was considered of great importance in the education of an orator, but it also came to be considered valuable in the general literary education of youths. One source of its value was simply that it encouraged the student to realize more vividly the situation in his literary and historical texts: to

The boys were to write letters impersonatingwellknown characters from history,legendor poetry,and write such letters as these charactersmight write to as other charactersin well-knowncircumstances describedin the Greekand Latinauthorsthe boys were reading. Thus Cicero writes a letter to Milo urging him to be patientin exile, Antenora prisonerin the Greek camp writes to his father Priam urging that Helen be returned Menelaus,Jonathanwritesto his to friend David to fortify his mind whilehe is in hiding. These themes are adaptationsto letter writingfrom the pervasiveancient declamatoryexerciseof prosoin popoeia,called ethopoeia the Latin Aphthoniusand allocutioin Priscian'sLatin versionof Hermogenes." Finally, the prosopopoeia was also valued for its use in elocutionary training. Elocution is a subject that has almost dropped out of modern education, but it must be remembered that training in the public reading and recitation of poetry was an important part of English (and American) education right up until the last generation, and it is no accident that the author of the first book on the dramatic monologue, Samuel Silas Curry, was a Boston elocutionist whose interest in the form was primarilyfrom this point of view. The rhetorical exercise of the prosopopoeia, then, formed a part of the education of English schoolboys well up into the nineteenth century, and many of the early poems of Tennyson, which we might consider to be dramatic monologues, are really prosopopoeiae. In the Poems by Two Brothers (1827), for example, there are such pieces as

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"Anthony to Cleopatra," spoken on the occasion of their being taken captive by Octavius, "Written by an Exile of Bassorah, While Sailing down the Euphrates," "Mithridates Presenting Berenice with the Cup of Poison," and "The High Priest to Alexander." They are not dramatic monologues in the Browningesque sense because there is no revelation of character. The speakers are types, not individuals, the language is stiff and rhetorical, and there is little psychological insight. Still, they do not differ in form from the poems that Tennyson began writing five or six years later: "CEnone," "Ulysses," "Tithonus," "Tiresias," and so on; and if Tennyson had been asked what kind of poems these were, he probably would have replied, prosopopoeiae. On the other hand, it is possible that he might have called them monodramas. "Monodrama" is not a term that is particularly well known to students of English literature. If they know it at all, it is probably in connection with Tennyson's Maud, which was so designated in the edition of 1875. Nonetheless, there is evidence that the term was fairly common throughout the nineteenth century and that it was often used of poems that we would now call dramatic monologues. Arthur Sedgwick, for example, writing as late as 1909, says of a group of Tennyson's poems," 'U3none'is epic in form [that is, the opening is in the third person], the rest ["Ulysses," "Demeter and Persephone," and "Tithonus"] are brief monodramas."'4 Similarly, R. H. Home in 1844 speaks of Tennyson's "powerful monodrama of 'St. Simeon Stylites,'" and a writer in the Eclectic Review (1849) says, "The entire sum of [Browning's] poetry may be said to be dramatic, though much of it, like so much of Tennyson's, "15 simple mono-drama. Browning himself seems never to have used the term, but that he knew it is evident from a letter that Elizabeth Barrett addressed to him on 27 February 1845. Speaking of her revised translation of Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound, she said, "And then, I have in my head to associate with the version ... a monodram of my
own-not a long poem, . . . but a monologue of


about the 1820's to the 1850's and was often used in a rather indeterminatesense. It is defined by the editors simply as "a dramatic piece for a single performer." On the other hand, Tennyson at least seems to have had a precise idea of what he meant by it. W. J. Rolfe reports that Tennyson, when reading [Maud] to Mr. Knowles, said (as in substancehe said when readingit to me): "It should be called'Maud, or the Madness.'It is slightlyakin to 'Hamlet.' No other poem (a monotone with plenty of change and no weariness)has been made into a dramawheresuccessive phasesof passionin one persontake the place of successivepersons."'7 One may venture to suggest that the word "monotone" here is a mistake for "monodrama," since a monotone with plenty of change and no weariness would be a contradiction in terms. In any case, in the Memoir Tennyson is again quoted as saying, "The peculiarity of this poem is that different phases of passion in one person take the place of differentcharacters"(I, 396). This is not an unapt description of Maud, but it is very different from the modern conception of the dramaticmonologue, and thus, if there is any evidence that what we call dramatic monologues were once called monodramas, we ought to inquire whether we have been approaching these poems in the wrong way. We ought, in any case, to know what a monodrama is simply in order to become acquainted with a minor but rather interesting phase of nineteenth-century literary history. II In its modern form monodrama was invented by Rousseau. It was probably in 1762 that Rousseau composed the text of a short dramatic piece entitled Pygmalion, for which, at his suggestion, Horace Coignet, an amateur musician, composed a musical setting in 1770. It was produced at Lyons in November of that year, was published in both newspaper and pamphlet form, and in 1772 was presented at the Opera in Paris before a "prodigious" number of spectators. Though it was never a great success, it remained in repertory for the rest of the century and was widely imitated and translated in Germany, Italy, France, and

iEschylus as he sate a blind exile on the flats of Sicily and recounted the past to his own soul, just before the eagle cracked his great massy skull with a stone."16 The examples cited by the Oxford English Dictionaryshow that the word was most popular from

The work arose out of Rousseau's thinking about French opera, especially about the problem of recitative. In his Essai sur l'origine des langues


and Monodrama the DramaticMonologue

range in length from two minutes to a few seconds, and which comment on portions of the prose text varying from a single word to a short paragraph. There is little action in the drama. Bored with his art and yet unable to tear himself away, Pygmalion discovers to his horror that he is in love with the divine Galathea. Trembling, he removes the veil that covers the statue and thinks to improve it by one final touch. As he raises his mallet, the marble seems alive and he starts back afraid. O, he cries, that Venus, soul of the universe, would endow her with some of the excess of life that wastes and consumes me! To his wonder the statue begins to move, slowly descends from the pedestal, and begins to speak. Touching herself, she says, "C'est moi." Touching another statue, "Ce n'est plus moi." Then, embracing Pygmalion, "Ah! encore moi." Whereupon, as the music takes on a more lively character, expressing by turns the timid desire of Galathea and the ardent passion of Pygmalion, the life forces flow out of the sculptor into his creation and he dies. "Je t'ai donne tout mon etre," he cries; "je ne vivrai plus que par toi" (cEuvres,n, 1230-31). In theme Pygmalion is a fable of the Romantic artist, but in form its most striking feature is the variety of emotions that Pygmalion runs through in short compass. Beginning in lassitude and ennui, he is troubled by a secret agitation, rises through the stages of ardent love for the goddess coupled with fear at violating her shrine, pride as her creator and yet tenderness as her devotee, a mad desire to endow her with a soul coupled with horror at his own unnatural love for a mere stone, fear of losing his reason, burning anguish, transports, torments, rage-all culminating in the prayer to Venus, and then a sudden calm followed by bitter irony, by wonder and bewildermentas he sees the statue move, incredulity changing to rapturous joy, and finally, as the life flows out of his body, quietude, serenity, death. In the catalog of the passions there is hardly one in any way appropriate to the theme that has been left out. Indeed, it is obvious that Pygmalion corresponds exactly to Tennyson's description of monodrama as a poem in which "successive phases of passion in one person take the place of successive persons." There is no focus on the character of Pygmalion, as there would be in a dramatic monologue by Browning, and though there is some interest in theme, the main concern is simply with the dis-

(1761), Rousseau had asserted that in their origin music and language were one: both had arisen from the cries with which man in a state of nature had expressed his passions. Gradually, however, language had become divorced from music and, in association with science and commerce, had become so abstract and unmelodious that the two could no longer be harmoniously combined. Because of the great power of music to express the passions, however, it was important that they should be combined, and in Pygmalion Rousseau attempted to find a way. His thought was that if music and declamation could not walk hand in hand, they should follow one another. Every musical phrase would alternate with a spoken phrase which it would underline,interpret,or comment upon. In this way, the actor would not have to sacrifice a natural style of acting in order to accommodate himself to the music, neither would music be hindered in its flights by the conceptual and phonetic properties of language. Indeed, once the passions reached such a pitch of intensity that language could no longer follow, music would continue alone, accompanied only by pantomime. For gesture was also one of the means by which man in a state of nature had expressed his passions. Precisely how this was to be managed may be seen in an edition of Pygmalion published by Joseph Kurzbock in connection with a performance at the Imperial Theater, Vienna, in 1772. The page is divided into three columns, in the first of which there is a brief description of the musical passage, in the second an indication of its length, and in the third the French text with directions for the actors. After a brief overture, the curtain rises on Pygmalion's studio, in which unfinished pieces of sculpture are lying about and a statue of Galathea is concealed behind a curtain in the alcove. Pygmalion himself is seated with his head in his hands, listless, disconsolate, tired of his art: the music expresses this fact-"l'accablement, l'inquietude, le chagrin, et le decouragement." It lasts two minutes. Starting up suddenly, the sculptor seizes his tools, gives a random stroke at this or that unfinished statue, then throws himself down discouraged. "La Musique exprime avec rapidite les premiers de ces mouvemens, se ralentit plr degres, et finit par des tons sourds jettes par intervalles.-Durete: 1 minute."19 So it goes through the twenty-six numbered passages which

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play of the passions by the combined means of music, declamation, and gesture. Out of Pygmalion arose an art form which flourished in several countries of Europe for over a quarter of a century and which had an influence on other related genres. Its greatest vogue was in Germany, and for this Goethe was in large part responsible. He became acquainted with the work in January 1773 and praised it to Sophie von la Roche as "eine treffliche Arbeit." It had already been produced in Weimar the previous spring with music by Anton Schweitzer, and so great was the success of this production that it was repeated in 1774. This in turn inspired the author and actor Johann Christian Brandes to try his hand at the form, and the result was Ariadne auf Naxos, the best and most famous of the German monodramas. Schweitzer was again to have composed the music, but he was unable to complete it and in the end it was supplied by Georg Benda. Benda then composed another monodrama, Medea, which was also well received, although not with the eclat of Ariadne, which was being played in theaters all over Europe.20 Benda called his Ariadnea "Duo Drama" since it actually consists of two successive monologues, the first by Theseus before the sleeping Ariadne, lamenting that he must leave her; the second and longer by Ariadne, when she awakens and finds her lover gone. Once again her speech is broken and distraught and, with the alternating musical passages, runs the gamut of the emotions, from her first joyful greeting of the dawn, through her growing apprehension at Theseus' long absence, her fear of the wild beasts and the sea, her gradual realization (confirmed by a Nymph) that she has been abandoned, to her grief, rage, and bitterness -her cry for vengeance-then her revulsion against these feelings, her tender memories of childhood and of her love for Theseus, her hope that she will be delivered, and, then, as a storm of thunder and lightning arises, her realization that her only deliverer will be Death. In the final crescendo of music, she is struck by a bolt of lightning and hurled into the sea. The text is undistinguished, but the music is of a higher quality and firmer structure than Coignet's. There is a smaller pantomimic element, and in a few places near the end, where the emotion is particularly intense, the music accompanies the declamation instead of alternating with it. This will become


more and more a feature of the German, as opposed to the French, monodrama. The great success of Ariadne(it wis performed 30 times in Berlin alone) produced further imitations which continued to be written and performed up into the nineteenth century. The titles of some thirty of these have survived and make it plain that their range of subject was not great. Tragic heroines of classical antiquity predominate -Medea, Dido, Niobe, Sophonisba-though there are some modern subjects and a few male protagonists. Mozart, who saw Seyler's troupe perform in Medea at Mannheim, was fascinated by the form and wrote to his father that he thought so highly of Benda's two monodramas that he carried them about with him wherever he went. "Not a note is sung," he explained, "only spoken; in fact it is a recitative with instruments, only the actor speaks instead of singing." Mozart himself is said to have written a monodrama, Semiramis, to a text by Gemmingen, but, if so, the work has apparently not survived.21 Goethe's interest in the form led him to compose one monodrama of his own, Proserpina. Apparently begun in 1776 as a lament for Gluck's niece, it was not completed until over a year later when Goethe, in a spirit of parody, incorporated it into the satirical comedy Der Triumph Empfindsamdes keit, as an example of the sensibility of the Sturm und Drang school. Later, in 1814, he gave it a separate and serious performance. Less disjointed than Pygmalion or Ariadne, it nevertheless moves through a considerable range of carefully modulated emotion. Wandering through the shadowy realm of Tartarus, Proserpina laments her wretchedstate, recallingher former happiness with her nymphs in the Vale of Enna. She pities the torments of Tantalus and the Danaids and imagines her mother's grief as she searches for her far and wide. She prays to Jove, if he is still her kindly father, to send her relief, and when she comes upon the pomegranate, she thinks by eating it to solace her misery, but learns, too late, that she has but confirmed herself as Queen of Hell. At the end, as her gesturesbecome more and more violent with the approach of her unwanted husband, a panoramic view of Hell opens in the background and she is seen stiffeninginto a part of the petrified tableau. Monodramas often became less monodramatic and more spectacular at the conclusion. So here a chorus of Parcae sing, revealing to


Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

"monodrama" and "duo drama" came into use, but these were gradually replaced by "melodrama," especially when reference was made to the style rather than the form (Veen, pp. 1-4, 40-45). By this time the style had normally come to involve declamation to musical accompaniment rather than, as with Rousseau, the alternation of declamation and music. In France, however, the form was most often called "melodrama," and at the beginning of the nineteenth century, when melodrama in the modern sense arose, it gradually appropriated the name. The person chiefly responsible for this was Gilbert de Pixerecourt,who, along with others, developed a popular "bloodand-thunder" drama which employed the monodramatic technique as a comment in the most affecting scenes. Somewhat in between monodrama as an independent form and monodrama as style or technique is Berlioz' Lelio, composed in 1832. Lelio is the second part of an autobiographical work, Episode in the Life of an Artist, of which the Symphoniefantastique is the first part. The protagonist, Lelio, is a young musician who speaks a Hamlet-like soliloquy in which the various phases of his thought or passion are objectified in a piece of music. That is to say, as he recalls an occasion when his friend Horatio sang Goethe's Ballad of the Fisherman, that ballad is actually sung. Or he feels melancholy and a Chorus of the Shades expresses this fact; he desires to flee civilization and become a brigand, and the Song of the Brigand Chieftain embodies this mood. In every case the piece is actually sung or played by secondary performers who are hidden from view, but it is apparent from Lelio's gestures and interspersed comments that the music is actually to be thought of as occurring in his mind. Thus, it serves the same purpose of commenting upon his mood as did the music of the earlier monodrama, and the shifts from despair to tender melancholy, from rage to ecstatic bliss, are quite as violent as those in Rousseau or Benda. Today, Lelio is considered too disjointed to form a proper artistic whole, but in its own day it was precisely this feature that made it the most popular of Berlioz' works.24 In later editions Berlioz called Lelio a monodrama. In the first edition he had called it a "melologue," a term which he borrowed from Tom Moore, who had used it (it was apparently his invention) to describe a series of airs illustrative

Proserpinathat she is theirs forever. By 1814 the vogue for monodrama was well past, but its influence upon other forms was only beginning. In Goethe's own works it may be seen most clearly in Werther and the early Faust. Wertheris in some ways the greatest of the European monodramas, and it is obvious that its epistolary form, in which the individual letters correspond to the sections of the monodrama, is ideally suited for following out all the turns and twists of the hero's highly mercurial spirit. The opening soliloquies of Faust in his chamber (11. 354-521, 606-807) and Gretchen's soliloquies at her spinning wheel and before the statue of Mater Dolorosa (11. 3374-3413, 3587-3619) are also monodramatic.22 Indeed, after the beginning of the nineteenth century the principal importance of monodrama is not as a separate form but as a stylistic element or technique which enters into other forms. It had some influence on the Singspiel, a light comic opera popular at the turn of the century, and was employed in particularscenes in regular opera. The grave-digging scene in Beethoven's Fidelio is the classic instance, but there is also the dream in his Egmont music, and the incantation scene in Weber's Der Freischtitz. The monodramatic technique also led to a kind of performance in which ballads were, not sung, but declaimed to musical accompaniment. In this case the accompaniment was normally pianoforte. This style became especially popular in England in the second half of the nineteenth century with the recitals of Clifford Harrison. A long series of such "Recitation Music" was written by Stanley Hawley, and a shorter series by Sir Alexander Mackenzie. Better known are Sterndale Bennett's music for "Paradiseand the Peri" (a selection from Moore's Lalla Rookh) and Richard Strauss's accompaniment to Enoch Arden. Liszt, Schumann, Mendelssohn, and Bizet also wrote such pieces, and Edith Sitwell's "Facade" with music by William Walton is a modern instance.23 At this point it is necessary to say a word about nomenclature. Though we have spoken of these works as monodramas, they were almost as often called melodramas. "Melodrama," which is, of course, literally, "musical drama," was the common term for opera in the eighteenth century and was so used by Rousseau. Rousseau's name for
Pygmalion was simply scene lyrique. It was in

Germany with Benda and others that the terms

A. Dwight Culler
of national character which he wrote for a benefit at the Dublin Theater in 1810. In the advertisement to the published work, "A Melologue upon National Music," Moore apologized for the "outlandish" term and explained that "by 'Melologue,' I mean that mixture of recitation and music which is frequently adopted in the performance of Collins's Ode on the Passions, and of which the most striking example I can remember is the prophetic speech of Joad in the Athalie of Racine."25The speech of Joad is, indeed, monodramatic, and the technique is extended in Mendelssohn's Athalie to the entire composition, but the precedent afforded by Collins' Ode is more interesting. William Collins' "The Passions, an Ode for Music" was first set to music by Dr. William Hayes and performed in the Theater at Oxford on 2 July 1750. The work turns on the fancy that in early Greece, when Music (Heavenly Maid) was young, the Passions gathered round her cell to hear her and, on one occasion, inspired to frenzy, snatched her instruments from the supporting myrtles and "proved" their own expressive power. First came Fear, who his Hand, its Skill to try, laid, Amid the Chordsbewilder'd And back recoil'dhe knew not why, Ev'n at the Sound himselfhad made. Then followed Anger, Despair, Hope, Revenge, Pity, Jealousy, pale Melancholy, Chearfulness,and Joy, each described in a stanza which not only personifies but also imitates the emotion it represents. Needless to say, Hayes's music, at least in the view of contemporaries, must have been far more directly expressive of what is rendered onomatopoetically and by personification in the poem. In any case, the picture of the Passions presents just the sense of rapidly shifting emotional states that is also presented by the sequence of allegorical stanzas: Exulting,trembling,raging,fainting, Possestbeyondthe Muse'sPainting; By turnsthey felt the glowing Mind, Disturb'd,delighted,rais'd,refin'd. "Alexander's Feast" is an earlier example in the same kind, in which Dryden has Timotheus, by the power of his flute and sounding lyre, raise in the soul of Alexander the successive emotions of pride, drunkenness, pity, soft desire, and violent rage. One may say that what Dryden tried to do


mythically and Collins by the personification of abstractions, the monodramatist attempted to do by embodying these passions in the broken and disordered speech of a single figure. Pantomime contributed something to the formation of monodrama, and it is one of the elements which, abstracted from it, took on a significant life of its own. It may be seen in the work of a certain J. F. Goz of Munich, who, a month after the first performance of Ariadne auf Naxos, produced a monodrama, Leonardo und Blandine, based on Burger's poem of that title, with music by Peter von Winter.26The remarkable feature of this work was that when the text was published in 1784, it was accompanied by a hundred and sixty engravings-"leidenschaftlich Progressionen"Goz called them-which he had designed to illustrate the sequence of emotions in the work. In his early training Goz had combined the study of art with the scientific study of anatomy. An anatomist friend of his had brought home portions of corpses for study, and he was fascinated by the articulation of the muscles and by the relation of these to facial expression. He was interested, in other words, in the bodily representation of mental states, but unlike Lichtenberg, Lavater, and the other physiognomists, he was not content simply to give a physical expression for each one of the passions. Rather, he was concerned to representthe nuances and transitions from one passion to another. He recognized that it would take some five hundred drawings to do justice to the gradations of feeling in even so short a drama as his, but he met this difficulty by beginning on an extremely minute scale and then, after Number 52, being more selective. Each drawing was accompanied by a line from the text which expressed generally the mental state of the speaker, and this was then followed by a paragraph of directions to the actor about the management of voice, gesture, facial expression, breathing, and posture. Holmstrom, who has studied Goz's work in detail, calls him the first great film director, and it is evident that his hundred and sixty engravings are an attempt to catch the flickeringmovements of the soul in a way that would only become possible with the development of the movie camera. In the meantime another person was attempting something similar by means of a slightly different but related art form, the "attitude."27In 1787, Miss Emma Hart, the future Lady Hamilton, was


Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

seeing his mistress as a mobile statue, had also wished to behold her as "a bright inimitable picture," and therefore on various occasions had set her in this frame. But, as Holmstrom observes, any attempt to fix the shifting attitudes into static pictures was foredoomed to failure--hence the relegation of the box to the lumber room. Mme Vigee-Lebrun, who witnessed a performance in 1802, wrote, "Elle passait de la douleur a la joie, de la joiea l'effroi, avec une telle rapidite que nous etions tous ravis" (Holmstrom, pp. 139, 118). Lady Hamilton's attitudes quickly became well known in aristocratic circles all over Europe. Goethe contributed to their celebrity by having Luciane in Die Wahlverwandtschaften perform attitudes, though she does so from a motive of vanity not art, and he declared that "Hamiltonisch-Handelische Gebarden" were one of the novel artistic elements in Proserpina(Holmstrom, pp. 112-13). A German artist, Friedrich Rehberg, drew a series of Lady Hamilton's attitudes and had twelve of them engraved by Piroli and published as from Nature at Naples Drawings Faithfully Copied (1794). Lady Hamilton's portrait formed the frontispiece, and the twelve attitudes were: Sibyl, Maria Magdalena, a solitary dreamer, Sophonisba, Amyone, Muse of the Dance, Iphigenia, Nymph, Priestess, Cleopatra, Holy Rosa, and Niobe. Though Lady Hamilton had no direct successors, through wide publicity her work lived on in modified form. Mme de Krudener performed shawl dances, a slightly different art, which she describes in her novel Valerie (1804) and which Mme de Stael had already described in her betterknown Delphine (1802) (Holmstrom, pp. 174Ida Brun, the Danish artist, performed 75),29 attitudes a la Hamilton from about 1798 to 1816. She used music and so was closer to monodrama, and she also appears, according to Schlegel, to have used more finely shaded transitions between the emotions and to have arranged them into a dramatic sequence. Henrietta Hendel-Schuitz,who was the other half of Goethe's "HamiltonischHandelische Gebarden," had been inspired by Rehberg's drawings to imitate Lady Hamilton's art not in the drawing room but on the professional stage. From about 1808 to 1815 she presenteda set program of some two dozen attitudes in two cycles, one designed to illustrate the history of Greek and Egyptian sculpture, the other of German and

living in Italy as the mistress of Sir William Hamilton, the British ambassador at Naples. Previously she had sat as a model to George Romney, the painter, and from him had learned how to pose, to manage costumes and draperies, and especially how to imitate the antique. Sir William, who was a great lover of classical art, thought to capitalize upon her beauty and talents by making her into a kind of living statue. By the use of several cashmere shawls and a few simple properties she would assume in turn the characters of Medea, Niobe, Cleopatra. The Countess de Broigne tells us that her performance took place not on a stage but in the middle of a drawing room with no special scenery and only a light directed from the side. Miss Hart appeared in a simple white tunic with a girdle, and with her hair either loose or held up by a comb. She would drape herself with a large mantle and under the cover of that would arrange her shawls, then drop the mantle and assume her attitude. She went quickly from one character to another without interruption. It was the dazzling rapidity of her changes that seems to have attracted people. Goethe, who was the first to leave a description of her performance, which he witnessed on his Italian journey, wrote: She exhibitseverypossiblevarietyof posture,expression, and look, so that at the last the spectatoralmost in fanciesit is a dream.One beholdsherein perfection, movement,in ravishingvariety,all that the greatestof artistshave rejoicedto be able to produce.Standing, kneeling, sitting, lying down, grave or sad, playful, exulting, repentant,wanton, menacing,anxious-all mental states follow rapidlyone after another. With wonderfultasteshe suitsthe foldingof her veil to each expression, and with the same handkerchiefmakes every kind of head-dress.The old knight holds the light for her, and enters into the exhibitionwith his whole soul. He thinks he can discernin her a resemall blanceto all the mostfamousantiques, the beautiful profiles on the Sicilian coins-aye, of the Apollo itself. This much at any rate is certain-the Belvedere is entertainment unique.We spent two eveningson it with thorough enjoyment.To-day Tischbein is engaged in paintingher.28 Two months later, on a second visit, Goethe was taken dou n into Sir William's lumber room where he saw a large black box standing upright, open in front and encased in a most splendid golden frame. He learned that his host, not content with

A. Dwight Culler
Italian painting (Holmstrom, pp. 174-208). The year 1815 was, indeed, about the end of the vogue for attitudes, though the form entered into amateur theatricals along with the charade and tableau vivant. Readers of Daniel Deronda will recall that Gwendolen Harleth "attitudinised" at Offendene with such striking success as to elicit from the German music master the cry, "A magnificent bit of plastik that!" (Ch. vi). And in view of the fact that Keats's urn may have come from Tischbein's engravings of Sir William Hamilton's collection of antique vases at Naples (1790-1809), one wonders whether the phrase "O Attic shape! Fair attitude!" does not contain some echoes of Lady Hamilton's art. By way of summary, then, one may say that there arose in the decades immediately before and after the turn of the century several related art forms that focused on a solitary figure, most frequently a woman, who expressed through speech, music, costume, and gesture the shifting movements of her soul. That the figure was solitary and that virtually the entire text consisted of her utterance was evidence of an attempt to focus on her subjectivity; that she was feminine was a further indication that the drama was one of passion. For this reason a moment of high intensity was normally chosen, and though occasionally there are monodramas, like that of Gretchen at the spinning wheel or Mariana in the moated grange, which insist on the unvarying round of a single emotion, for the most part the character is distracted, divided in will, torn between conflicting emotions, so that he or she can run through a whole series of kaleidoscopic changes. Change is, indeed, the essence of this medium. Joanna Baillie, in her Plays on the Passions (1798), had devoted one play to each passion-DeMontfort to hate, Ethwaldto ambition, and so on. But Samuel Foote in his Treatise on the Passions(1747) had indicated the importance of variegating them, and Aaron Hill had noted that Sensibility, the quality most necessary for an actor, consists above all in "that pliantness of disposition by means of which the different passions are made easily to succeed one another in his soul." The actor must be like soft wax so as "to receive whatever modifications the writer pleases, and that in an easy, an unconstrain'd succession." For the heart that enjoys sensibility will be "capable of becoming, in


the same minute, a Medea and a Sappho"30which is precisely what Lady Hamilton did. IIIl How did monodrama come to England? It so happens that we know quite a bit about this and can say with assurancethat it came from Germany rather than France. Pygmalion, of course, was not unknown. Shortly before 1799 there was a representation of it "at the temporary Theatre, erected by Lord Villers at Boulney," in which Galathee was played by Miss Hodges and Pygmalion by Mr. Texier.3' An anonymous translator, said to be Berquin, writes that he was so much moved by this representation that he could not forbear attempting a poetical version of it in English. Unfortunately, he was not moved to accuracy, for not only did he incorporate the stage directions into the text and introduce some third-person narration so as to smooth the whole thing out into a bland declamation, but he also gratuitously introduced a three-page comparison of Pygmalion to a sailor abandoned on a tropical isle. Nevertheless, he did print the French at the bottom of the page, and, given the commerce between the two countries, we may be sure that others would have read the original and even seen it presented at Paris. The main channel, however, by which monodrama was introduced into England was that of German literature, and the purveyors were William Taylor of Norwich, his friend Dr. Frank Sayers, and Robert Southey. Taylor (1765-1836), who was known as the first German scholar of the country and who anticipated Coleridge, De Quincey, and Carlyle in introducing German literature into England, was one of the leading spirits of that remarkable literary circle in East Anglia which also included Dr. Sayers. The two were schoolboys together and remained friends throughout their lives. After completing his schooling, Taylor traveled on the Continent for three years, from 1780 through 1782, and on his return renewed his association with Sayers, then living near Norwich. "The literatureof Germany," writes Taylor in his memoir of Sayers, "then almost unknown in England, I had pervasively studied, and was eager to display; and frequently I translated for his amusement such passages as appeared to me remarkable for singularity or


Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

Though the neglect of it cannot be deemedof much importance,yet we find many of these poems among the Germans,French,and Italians,whichare exceedingly interestingboth in the closet and the theatre.When representedon the stage, the Monodramais usuallydeclaimedwith intervalsof music. (CollectiveWorks,pp. 91-92)35 Although Pandora followed the Continental models by having a classical theme and a feminine subject, it is significant that the first published monodrama was, as Southey said in his review of Sayers' Collective Works in 1827, "the soliloquy of a northern chieftain, oppressed with age and painful dreams, and resolving, as was esteemed honourable in such circumstances, to die by his own hand."36 For part of the background of Sayers' work was the interest in Northern antiquities exemplified by Gray's Bard (1757) (which might be described as a monodrama without knowing it), and this in turn influenced Southey to continue the form in a way rather different from its French and German antecedents. Southey visited William Taylor at Norwich in 1798 and through him met Dr. Sayers. He had already written two monodramas, Sappho and Orthryadesand Aristodemus,but as a result of this meeting his interest in the form was revived. Writing to William Wynne in the next year, he said, "You know I am fond of mono-dramas. The dramatic turn which my thoughts have for some time taken has suggested to me the thought of narrating in dialogues, or poems not much longer, such historical or other facts as would make noble scenes only."37"Noble scenes only," however, are not monodramas, and the resulting five worksThe Wife of Fergus, Ximulpoca,Lucretia, Frances -follow the model of de Barry, and La Caba Oswald rather than Ariadne. Undoubtedly, the omission of the musical intervals is primarily responsible for the fact that the fluctuating display of passion is now replaced by noble sentiments, but the influence of the English and French heroic drama is also a factor. Southey thinks of these pieces as a scene out of a drama rather than as an independent form. The original models were again brought forward, however, by William Taylor, who was now stimulated, probably as a result of the meeting with Southey, to publish his translations. "Goethe's Proserpina: A Monodrama" was published in the Monthly Magazine for July 1798, and

beauty."32After studying medicine at Edinburgh, Sayers himself went abroad in 1788 to procure a degree from a Dutch university and then traveled in the Low Countries and France, where he visited the theaters. "Soon after his return," Taylor continues, "he took some lessons of me in German. We construed together, I forget in what order, beside some other pieces which have left no traces in his writings, the Proserpina of Goethe, the Luise of Voss, portions of the chorus-dramas of Klopstock, some odes of Stolberg, and the ballad which he versified under the title of Sir
Egwin.... He did not, however, persevere in the

study of German language, beyond what was necessary to form a correct idea of it; nor was he a warm admirer of the literature" (p. xxxviii). Abandoning medicine for belles lettres, Sayers undertook the composition of lyric dramas, modeling his works on those of Mason, Klopstock, and the Greeks, but drawing his materials from Percy's Northern Antiquities.The result was his Dramatic Sketches of Northern Mythology, published early in 1790. Later in the year, writes Taylor, he composed "the admirable monodrama, entitled Pandora, which is not only the finest poem of the kind in our language, but may be confronted with advantage against the Pygmalion of Rousseau, or even the Proserpina of Goethe, which last had served in some degree as a model" (pp. lix-lx). A second monodrama, Oswald, was written in 179192 and was published in the second edition of Dramatic Sketches (1792), Pandora being added later.33It was this edition that Southey, then a youth of eighteen, purchased-"the first book," he writes, "I was ever master of money enough to order at a country bookseller's."34He was fascinated with what he read and between 1793 and 1802 composed seven monodramas which he published in the Monthly Magazine, his own Annual Anthology, and successive editions of his Poems. Pandora, then, was apparently the first monodrama to be written in English, and Oswald the first to be published. The earliest use of the word in print was apparently that in Sayers' Introduction to Oswald: The Monodramais a species of Play, which has not yet, as far as I am able to discover,been attemptedby Englishwriters:it was probablytoo simpleto engage their attention, or they might imagine it little calculated to gratify a people who are fond, perhapsto excess, of the bustle of incidentand intricacyof plot.

A. Dwight Culler
an adaptation of Friedrich Stolberg's "Theseus, a Monodrama" appeared in the same magazine the following June.38 As Taylor explained to Southey, "Stolberg has made a chorus-drama of it, which I am abridging into a monodrama."39 But Taylor's greatest contribution to the subject was his Historic Surveyof GermanPoetry, in which he not only reprintedhis translation of Proserpina but also added translations of two new monodramas, the Ino of Charles William Ramler and the Ariadne on Naxos of Heinrich Wilhelm von Gerstenberg. The latter, which is actually the text of the cantata on which the Ariadne of Brandes and Benda was based, is described as having been "successfullydeclaimed on the theatre at Hamburg with intervals of music" and as "the earliest poem It of its kind extant in German literature."40 is, however, in Taylor's opinion, inferior to Ino and Proserpina.Ino, who is being pursued by her husband, appears on a promontory with her child Melicertes in her arms. After a lengthy lament she throws herself into the sea but is rescued by a Chorus of Nereids and Tritons and made into the goddess Leucothea, her child into the god Palaemon. As Taylor says, "The Pygmalion of J. J. Rousseau had already succeeded on the theatre at Paris: this monodrama was also declaimed with intervals of music, which had been selected, or composed, by Graun. The overture and the earlier passages had a stormy tragic expression, and the concluding portion a triumphal and exulting character. The final spectacle, when Neptune rises from the waves, and the Tritons and Nereids execute before his car a graceful ballet, accompanied by the concluding air and chorus, was received with bursts of applause" (I, 328). One has the impression that Taylor is describing a performance he had actually witnessed. Finally, there is the contribution to the genre of Matthew Gregory ("Monk") Lewis. As an undergraduate at Oxford, Lewis had spent the long vacation of 1791 in Paris and there had familiarized himself with French drama and probably with translations of German Sturm und Drang productions. His father wished him to take up a diplomatic career, and so in the summer of 1792 he was sent to Germany to learn the language. He arrived at Weimar on 27 July, met the great Goethe, and again immersed himself in the theater. It was probably from this source, not through his boyhood acquaintance with Southey, that he learned


about monodramas, for his own monodrama, produced some ten years later, was designed as a stage production. By this time Lewis was a successful dramatist, his play Alonzo, King of Castile was having a run at Covent Garden, and in 1803 he asked Harris, the manager, "whether he would let Mrs. Litchfield speak some lines which I have
written, between the play and the farce. ... The lines . . . are called 'The Captive,' and are to be

spoken with accompaniments of music."41Harris agreed, and in March the Covent Garden playbill duly announced that "In the Course of the next Week will be produced a Mono-Drama, or TragicLewis was not hopeful Scene, called the Captive."42 of its success. "The monodrama comes out on Tuesday," he wrote to his mother. "I have not yet been at a single rehearsal. It cannot possibly succeed." His opinion was verifiedby the event: Mrs. Litchfieldrecited the monodramain the most all perfectmanner;and gave to the performance the effect of fine acting. Her characterwas that of a maniac, and her imbodyment [sic] of the author's horribleimagings,combinedwiththe sceniceffect,and other startlingappearances, whichwith his usual skill he introducedin the piece, threw a portion of the audience-whose nerveswere unableto withstandthe dreadful truth of the language and the scene-into hysterics,and the whole theatre into confusion and horror.... Never did CoventGardenpresentsuch a picture of agitation and dismay. Ladies bathed in tears-others fainting-and someshrieking withterror -while such of the audienceas were able to avoid demonstrations these,sat aghast,with pale horror like paintedon theircountenances. is said, that the very It box-keeperstook fright, less, perhaps,at the occurrences on the stage than at the state of the theatre. (Life and Correspondence,233-34) I, Lewis himself acknowledged that the piece
proved too terrible for representation. ... In fact, the

subject(whichwas merelya pictureof madness)was so uniformlydistressing the feelings,that at last I to felt my own a little painful;and as to Mrs. Litchfield, she almostfaintedaway.I did not expectthat it would succeed; and of course am not disappointedat its failure.The only chancewas, whether wouldmake pity the audienceweep; but, insteadof that, terrorthrew them into fits; and, of course,therewas an end to my
monodrama. (Life and Correspondence,I, 234-35)

Lewis withdrew the piece after a single performance. The Captive. A Scene in a Private Madhouse was not published separately but was included in


? Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

local literary and scientific circles that he became acquainted with monodrama, and in all likelihood it was his understanding of the form and his concern with psychological morbidity that led him to see how Maud should be interpreted. His analysis of the poem is still one of the best that we have: Maud is a drama;-that is, an action; . . . The dramatis personaof the action,-for there is but one individualwho is ever broughtforwardin it in person, -exhibits his story throughthe mentalinfluencesits severalincidentsworkin himself,and this exhibition is made, not directlyand connectedly,but, as it were, and inferentially interruptedly, througha seriesof distinct scenes,which are as variedas the circumstances of involved.It is in this peculiarity the poem,-the one person revealingto the readerhis own sad and momentous history, by fits and starts, which are themselves but so many impulsive utterancesnaturally called forth from a mind strungto the pitch of keen and poeticsensibility,- thatits absoluteoriginality the skill of the Laureate displayed. are Nothing surpassing can be more exquisitelyconsonantto the proceedings should be madein of naturethan that such utterances fitfuland brokenstrains,ratherthan that they should marchsteadilyon to the measureof equal lines, and
regularly recurring rhymes. .

Lewis' Poems (1812), though without stage directions, introduction, or dumb show. The full text is (1839). The given in his Life and Correspondence scene represents a dungeon with grated door and gallery above. "Slow and melancholy music. The Captive is discovered in an attitude of hopeless grief:-she is in chains;-her eyes are fixed, with a vacant stare, and her hands are folded." It is a madhouse cell to which she has been confined by her tyrannical husband. When the Gaoler leaves bread and water, she rouses herself and begs him to inform her father and brothers, to pity her infant child. "Harsh music, while the Gaoler, with a look of contempt and disbelief," shakes her off. Her refrain, "I am not mad," shows that in fact she is going mad, and when a screaming maniac breaks loose and shakes the bars of her cell, brandishing a flaming torch, she does go mad. Immediately thereafter, her father, brothers, younger sister, and child enter and, in dumb show, attempt to woo her back to reason. She finally recognizes her little child, and "The Father, &c., raise their hands to heaven, in gratitude for the return of her reason, and the curtain falls slowly
to solemn music"


. Every utterance,

In view of the fact that Tennyson's monodrama was originally entitled Maud or the Madness and that it grew out of a lyric ("O that 'twere possible") which is a picture of madness, only later being elaborated to include the earlier story, one wonders whether Tennyson was aware of Lewis' production. Of course, there were many other avenues through which he might have become acquainted with the form of monodrama. He certainly knew Southey's poetry,43and he might well have been led by Southey's review in the Quarterly Review, which he was undoubtedly reading in 1827, to Sayers' Collective Works, which, in any case, enjoyed some reputation in the early nineteenth century. Taylor's Historic Survey of GermanPoetry would have been well known at Cambridge, where an interest in all things German was very high. Indeed, there is some sense in which monodrama is, if not a Cambridge, at least an East Anglian form, and also particularly associated with medicine. Robert J. Mann, the physician whose pamphlet Maud Vindicated(1856) was the first to apply the term "monodrama" to Maud, was a native of Norwich and practiced medicine there for many years. Presumably, it was in reading the works of his illustrious predecessors in the

is whetherit be of sentiment,passion,or reflection, an impulsiveoutburst;but it is an outburstthat involuntarilyclothesitselfin languageof the most appropriate and character vividpower.Such,both in the matterof sense and of music, is the language of Maud. The syllablesand lines of the severalstanzasactuallytrip and halt with abrupt fervour, tremblewith passion, swell with emotion, and dance with joy, as each separate phase of mental experiencecomes on the scene. The power of languageto symbolizein sound mentalstatesand perceptions, neverbeforebeenso has of magically proved.In the successful employment this kind of word-music,the author of Maud stands enas, tirelyunrivalled, in its generalform of severedramatic uni-personality, poem itself is absolutely the unique.44 A little later, Mann calls the work a "monodrama," and it has been suggested that it is from this source that Tennyson got the term.45 The sugis plausible, though it is a little odd that gestion he should have waited nineteen years to apply it to his own work. It is even possible that it is from Mann that Tennyson derived his description of Maud as "differentphases of passion in one person tak[ing] the place of different characters," for the description seems to echo some of Mann's phrases. Still, we have tried to demonstrate that

A. Dwight Culler
the idea of works consisting of sequential phases of passion was common at this time. Indeed, in 1866 Swinburne defended his "Dolores" by contending that it was the first part of a "lyrical monodrama of passion," of which "The Garden of Proserpine" and "Hesperia" are the remainder. Each is to be regarded not as a valid statement in itself but as a "transitional state" leading up to or succeeding upon another.46Tennyson himself once described In Memoriamin those terms. "The differentmoods of sorrow," he says, "as in a drama are dramatically given.. .. 'I' is not always the author speaking of himself; but the voice of the human race speaking thro' him" (Memoir, I, 304-05). In Memoriamn, in other words, is also a kind of monodrama, and the important thing about Maud is not whether Tennyson got the term from Mann but that he recognized and accepted the designation as accurate. To what extent is Maud a monodrama? Does it possess the characteristics of the works that we have been describing? It is obvious that it is not a direct imitation of them, for it is far longer and more complex, it has a larger narrative element, and, of course, it is not set to music. Still, it does have the same dazzling variety of mood as expressed in the varied forms of the individual lyrics. When Maud smiles upon the speaker, he is ready to fall at her feet, but when his dark imagination broods upon the significance of her smile, he is plunged into gloom. When he sees her in church he is reassured, but when he sees her riding on the moor with his rival he is like a sudden spark struck vainly in the night. Even within the lyrics the mood shifts abruptly from one state of feeling to another. In Part i, Section ii, when the hero first sees Maud, he says, "Long have I sighed for a calm," but then observes bitterly, "It will never be broken by Maud," whose ' cold and clear-cut face" is "Dead perfection, no more." But no sooner has he said this than he admits, "nothing more, if it had not
been / For .


." and he then enumerates all the

interesting little beauties with which he is already half in love, until, drawing himself up, he declares, "From which I escaped heart-free"-adding the admission, "with the least little touch of spleen" (Part i, 11.77-87).47 Every lyric and part of lyric can be analyzed in this way, as if spoken by the Two Voices of Tennyson's earlier poem, or by the several voices of love, resentment,jealousy, pique, moodiness, melancholy, tender longing, self-

depreciation, anger, whimsy, playfulness, lyric exultation, and mad pride. The basic conflict in Part I is between the hate with which the poem opens and the love in which it closes, between morbidity and health, madness and sanity, violence and calm-ultimately, between life and death-and this is its dramatic action. Tennyson said that Maud was "a little Hamlet," but by this he did not mean that his work was to be compared with Hamlet in dramatic action or moral theme. He meant, I think, that Hamlet is a man of "wild and whirling words," who moves with bewildering rapidity from dark melancholy to an unnatural hilarity, from freaks of violence to freaks of madness, who plays role after role, leaping into graves and coming "ungyved" into his lady's closet. In the rhetorical tradition of the English stage Hamlet was one of the great virtuoso roles, and just as he runs the gamut of the passions, so too does the hero of Maud. It is in this sense that Maud is "a little Hamlet." Furthermore, the sequence of the passions in Maud follows a common monodramatic formula. Beginning in morbidity and bitterness, it rises through the alternating moods of dark suspicion and growing love to the exaltation and even exhilaration of the garden scene. It then plunges down through the remembered violence of the duel into the madness of Part II and reemerges with the hero calm but shattered in Part II. It seems likely that the mad scenes, as indicated by the preliminary title and by the fact that it was from these that the drama took its rise, are those that Tennyson would have regarded as the culmination of the work.48The final scene, where the hero resolves his problems by embarking for the Crimean War, has been criticized as unsatisfactory, and from a moral point of view it is. But in the light of the tendency of monodrama to resolve itself in spectacle it can at least be understood. If the work were performed, there is no doubt that the hero's dream, in which Maud is seen to separate herself from the band of the blest and pronounce a benediction upon the War, would actually have been performed in the upper regions of the theater; and the lines in which the hero "stood on a giant deck and mixed my breath / With a loyal people shouting a battle cry" (Part iII, 11.34-35) would have been accompanied by a panorama of ships-of-the-line passing across the rear of the stage much as Tennyson saw them


Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

scarcely be admired. If he is simply a medium for stringing the passions on, he is no thread but a very stout piece of twine. And it is apparent that Tennyson occasionally took this substantive view of his poem. He said on one occasion that it represented "the holy power of love." But if this is so, then the "characters" of the poem are no longer, as he once said, the "different phases of passion in one person," but are Maud, her brother, the protagonist, and his rival. In other words, the interest in the shifting passions, which had dominated the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, has been replaced by an interest in what links them together-what Locke and Bishop Butler called Personal Identity. Keats had said that the poet has no Identity, but here the Egotistical Sublime of character has triumphed over the Negative Capability of form. IV If we now ask what bearing this discussion has on the dramatic monologue, we might begin by turning to the monologue closest in theme and form to Maud, "Locksley Hall." "Locksley Hall" arises out of the same biographical situation as Maud-Tennyson's disappointed love for Rosa Baring; and it presents essentially the same protagonist-a moody young man who has lost his youthful idealism as a result of Amy's falseness and the venality of the age, and whose problem now is whether he should remain a gloomy and embittered hero or regain his faith in progress. The poem does not have the metrical variety of Maud, and it is retrospective rather than being enacted in a continuous present. But the range and variety of mood, as arising out of this inner conflict, are nearly as great, and one could go through the poem and put a mark at the points where the sudden shifts occur (11. 39, 56, 63, 74, 96, 107, 145, 173). At the end, the black storm clouds gather and the speaker exits amid thunder and lightning, as Ariadne had taught him to do. Probably not Ariadne, however. For Tennyson tells us that "Locksley Hall" was inspired by Sir William Jones's translation of the Moallakat, the seven Arabian poems hung up in the temple at Mecca (Memoir, i, 195), and though we initially receive this statement in disbelief, so quintessentially Victorian does the poem appear, when we turn to Jones's work we find that it is, indeed, true. Six of the seven poems follow almost exactly

move down the Solent as he was writing this scene. The whole would have been accompanied with martial music, the booming of guns in the distance, fireworks, and other displays of theatrical machinery. It is, indeed, a pity that we cannot see Maudperformed.Skepticswho heardTennyson read the poem were normally convinced, and they reported that by the end tears were pouring down his cheeks. Even from the little selection which he recorded on wax cylinders and which has been reissued on a disc by the Tennyson Society, one can gain some idea of the range and variety of his voice, and of the passion that he put into it. Richard Strauss composed incidental music for Enoch Arden. It is a pity that he did not compose it for Maud, for if one could hear the work performed by a virtuoso actor, with intervals of music to interpret the shifting moods, one would have a better idea of the kind of work it was supposed to be. This does not mean that it is absolutely successful. William K. Wimsatt, meditating upon the sequence from Hamlet through Maud to Prufrock, and on T. S. Eliot's criticisms of Maud, concludes that the faults of the poem are related to its transitional state.49It is in between plot and symbol. Or, as Eliot says, it is neither a drama nor a lyric. I would rather say that it is neither a pure monodrama nor a proper dramatic monologue. In pure monodrama, character is little more than a formal thread on which the beads of passion are strung. As such, one should not attribute to its "development," as indicated by the sequence in which the passions occur, any ethical or human significance. The sequence of the passions is determined by purely formal considerations, as are the movements of a piece of music. One may begin softly, rise into a crescendo, and then modulate to a close; or one may begin in a burst of thunder, descend into a melting mood, and end with all stops pulled. There are a variety of formal patterns the monodrama may follow, and a complete study of the form ought to detail them. But in Maud Tennyson created an "objective correlative" which was at once too palpable and insufficient. Had he remained within the classical tradition and created a Hercules Furens or Orlando Furioso, I think we would not have objected. But taking a slice of modern bourgeois life and treating it realistically as in a novel, he has as his protagonist one who cannot be ignored and yet who can

A. Dwight Culler
the pattern of "Locksley Hall": the poet, coming upon the place where the tent of his beloved had formerly been raised but which is now desolate, dismisses his companions and alternately cries out upon her faithlessness and upon his own weakness in still being affected by her. In a wild Oriental manner he darts from subject to subject and mood to mood with an extravagance hardly equalled by Rousseau; in one instance, the scene is also terminated by a thunderstorm. The poems are certainly the original of "Locksley Hall," but they are also Arabian versions of monodrama, and one notes that the English translation was published in 1799, just as the interest in monodrama was at its height. From all over the world, from Scandinavia and Arabia, from French opera and classical prosopopoeia, came the elements to satisfy the need then felt to explore the passionate heart of man. Two other works described by Tennyson's contemporaries as monodramas are "CEnone" and "St. Simeon Stylites." Today, "IEnone" is most often referredto as an epyllion or brief epic. However, Walter J. Allen, Jr. and John F. Reilly have clearly proved that no such form existed in antiquity and that it was invented by a German philologist whose work Tennyson could not have known.50It is true that "UEnone" does derive from the Alexandrian idyll, but so too does modern monodrama. Ovid's Heroides,which is a continuation of the Alexandrian tradition, was the main source of the text of the German monodramas, and it is also the source of "ZEnone.""(Enone" combines with the monodrama a Judgment of Paris, but the purely lyrical element, which moves from the soft complaint of the early lines to the fiery passion of the close, gives it a claim, at least, to being considered the clearest and purest example of monodrama by a major English poet. Not so "St. Simeon Stylites." In this work the ironic or Browningesque element first appears in Tennyson. It is true, there is some vacillation between Simeon's absolute conviction that he is saved and his uncertainty on that subject, but the main dramaticinterplay is between his understanding of his situation and the reader's. He leads into poems like "The Bishop Orders His Tomb," and the difficulty of fitting him into the monodramatic tradition becomes apparent if one considers what kind of music would have to be supplied. Should it reinforce the moods of the speaker or the mood


of the listener? To do both it would have to be "ironic" music, and it is not certain that that was available to the composer of Tennyson's day. Let us now conclude with some general remarks on how and why monodrama arose and what it meant. It was an attempt to represent the "motions of the soul." In antiquity the "wise man" was characterized above all by imperturbability (ataraxy). Stoic, Epicurean, and Skeptic agreed that he must be independent of the world, and since he could not control the world, he must control its effects within himself. These effects, the passions, were conceived of in terms of motion, and therefore the normal and proper state of the soul was painless rest. With Galileo, however, the idea of motion acquired a new status. Cause, which had previously been a substance, was now the motion of substances-the passing over of motion from one substance to another. Descartes sought to apply this conception to the mental realm, to establish, as Windelband says, "the fundamental forms of psychic motion, out of which the multiplicity of inner experiences would become explicable."51 Both Descartes and Spinoza produced a "natural history of the emotions," the former deriving them from the six fundamental forms of wonder, love, and hate; desire, pleasure, and pain; the latter (who depended partly on Hobbes) deriving his from the last three alone. And Descartes, while acknowledging that one must learn to control the passions, insisted that although the soul may have pleasures of its own, those that are common to it and the body "depend entirely on the passions, so that the men whom they can most move are capable of partaking most of enjoyment in this life."52 Happiness was no longer a state of painless rest. The question, then, was how to gain access to this inner world of psychic motion and how to represent it externally. To the tragic actor, who found himself more and more frequently playing the role of "passion's slave," this was a major problem, and there were handbooks, derived from the practice of the great actors, that taught him how to dispose his visage, his body, his gestures. The painter also needed help and was given it in Charles Le Brun's Methodepour apprendrea dessiner les passions (1698) and much later in Charles Bell's Anatomy and Philosophy of Expression (1806). Exactly how the soul and body made contact was uncertain. Descartes thought it was


Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

One may say, then, that monodrama belongs to the same tradition as "Alexander's Feast" and Collins' Ode on the Passions, but that the passions, instead of being treated abstractly, are attributed to a single dramatic speaker whose narrative provides an occasion for the order in which they are introduced. The speaker is still not significantly individualized, and it was one of the complaints against monodrama that Ariadne was not distinguished from CEnone, or the plight of being abandoned by one's lover from that of being deprived of one's children. This is true even in Tennyson's poems. The voice of Tithonus is not strikingly different from that of Ulysses, nor the hero of Maud from the hero of "Locksley Hall." Different emotions are, of course, appropriate to their differentsituations, but the charactersare not individualizedas are Bishop Blougram and Andrea del Sarto. Thus, the thing that happened with Browning and the dramatic monologue is not so much a matter of the poet's projecting himself into another being as of the generalized passions being made specific. The passions explored in the monodrama are universal and abstract; those in the dramatic monologue are so connected with the particularacts and circumstances of an individual, with his deeds and situation, that we can hardly avoid partly sympathizing with and partlyjudging him. It would be pointless to judge Alexander at his feast or the series of emotions in Collins' Ode. All one can do is "feel with" (sym-pathize or suffer with) the passions there presented. To a degree this is true even of Maud and "Locksley Hall." Modern readers find the latter poem unsatisfactory because in their view the speaker is a callow youth, jejune both in his ravings against the age and in his faith in progress, and they search in vain for some evidence that Tennyson thought so too. It is likely that Tennyson has individualized and dramatized his hero too much, so that we inquire into the "objective correlative" of his emotion, but when the poem first appeared-when it sounded through the Victorian world like a trumpet blast-readers did not seem to do this. They simply wondered at the range and variety of human emotion. Is not this what we are also supposed to do, at least to some degree, in "Ulysses"? The modern quarrel about "Ulysses" is whether we are to find that quester entirely admirable or not. Auden said, No, he is irresponsiblein going off and leaving his kingdom thus, and others have caught in Ulysses'

through the animal spirits in the pineal gland, but all agreed that music, as the most spiritual of material things, had peculiar power both to stimulate the passions within the soul and also to express those passions once aroused. John Hollander has shown that this conception of music as an affective and expressive art arose during the early seventeenth century at the same time that the shift from a philosophy of rest to a philosophy of motion was going on.53In the sixteenth century the idea of music that prevailed was that of a cosmic harmony produced by the rotation of the spheres. The soul of man ideally participated in that harmony, and actual music was an imitation of it. But in the seventeenth century this conception was replaced by the idea of music as an affective art that had the power to raise and quell the passions through the stimulus of the senses. "What Passion cannot Musick raise and quell?" asked Dryden in his first St. Cecilia's Day Ode. As a result, it became a seventeenthcentury commonplace that music was a form of rhetoric, a language that had the same power to move and persuade as ordinary language had, and the ancient musical modes-the Dorian, which was grave and manly, the Phrygian, which was warlike, and the Lydian, which was soft and voluptuous-were invoked to explain how comparable "moods" (the falling together of the two words was considered significant) were aroused in the reader. Music could work directly upon the passions through the stimulation of the senses, but it could do this the more effectively, it was now thought, in association with a literary text. Hollander indicates that so long as one was thinking of a participant, who was actually singing the text, this would be true even in an intricate polyphonic setting, but to a listener the words would be difficult to understand, and so in the early seventeenth century there was developed the stilo recitativo in which a single solo voice was accompanied only by a simply figured bass line. This became for a time the type of the expressive setting, and it triumphed in the development of opera. It was at this point, as we have seen, that Rousseau entered the picture and attempted to carry the expressive conception of both music and language a step further by freeing each from the constraints of the other. By having them alternate their roles he created a structure that was ideally designed to catch the rapidly shifting, changing character of human passion.

A. DwightCuller
voice the accents of death, not life. All this may be true, but it seems likely that Tennyson thought of Ulysses as moving through four phases of emotion: the rejection of the barren, sterile life on Ithaca, the memory of his earlier heroic life when he followed knowledge like a sinking star, his recognition of the validity of Telemachus' more prudential way, and his final setting out upon the quest freighted with all these thoughts. This would be clearer, of course, if monodrama had not by this time dispensed with music. Imagine Ulysses seated disconsolate, as Pygmalion was, and speaking bitterly about the narrow and barren world in which he is confined. Dark and somber music reinforces his mood. Then, as he gradually rouses himself and recalls his former heroic life, the tempo quickens, stirring tones are introduced, and the music rises to a crescendo as he senses that all experience lies like an open arch before him. Then there is a sudden change as he thinks of his responsibilities at home, and in the grave and stately measures that follow he praises Telemachus and the life of civic order. Finally, the music picks up once more, it expresses the stir and bustle of departure, and as Ulysses leaves we have the sense that he is indeed going upon a last voyage, but going triumphantly, as one who has not accepted limitation as possible for the human mind. With these accompaniments would one worry about Penelope or little Telemachus? Still, one may say, the music is not there. True, but the music of Tennyson's language is there, and I think that if one had not been conditioned by a century and a half of silent reading, of deliberately playing down the metrical and rhetorical effects of poetry, one would understand. Admittedly, one cannot turn back time, eliminate the complexities that have been introduced, or expunge irony where irony once has stood. But one can realize in general that a dramatic monologue should be dramatic, and that the drama of this poem is not primarily between the speaker and the reader but between the four phases of the speaker's soul. Let me conclude by referring to two portraits which seem to gather up and symbolize much of what we have been saying-the portrait of the Duchess in Browning's "My Last Duchess" and Pater's famous word-portrait of Mona Lisa. It is obvious that if Browning had written "My Last Duchess" as a monodrama, it would have been spoken not by the Duke but by the Duchess, pre-


sumably in the moments just before her death in the prison in which she had been incarcerated. She would have begun with a low moan at her wretched state, would have remembered how her husband had grown increasinglytyrannical, would have thought fondly of the day when a youth of the court brought her a bough of cherries from the orchard, would have wept at the blow or reprimand he received, would have recalled with pleasure the day she sat for her portrait and how Fra Pandulph in his courtesy called up a spot of joy upon her cheeks-but there is no need to proceed to the end. The point of the poem would have been the varied passions of the lady as modulated by music and her varied language. But for this Browning substitutes a painting in which the Duke has fixed her in a single moment. The Duke stops time, puts an end to motion, and fixes her in the stasis of a work of art. In so doing he fixes himself, in a posture of cold pride and esthetic detachment, and he also fixes the envoy. At the beginning of the monologue the envoy sits and he does not rise until the end. His eye is fixed upon the spot of joy and his ear upon the cold intonation of pride, and he must make his choice between them. The reader is in the same position as the envoy: he too must listen, view, understand, and make his choice. He is a "wise man," not, certainly, in his imperturbability-he is deeply disturbed-but in his ironic detachment. Pater's Mona Lisa, on the other hand, is the very symbol of all the monodramatic heroines of all the ages, for she has experienced the totality of human passion. In her is embodied "the animalism of Greece, the lust of Rome, the mysticism of the middle age with its spiritual ambition and imaginative loves, the return of the Pagan world, the sins of the Borgias."54But although she is the very symbol of the world of psychic flux and would have been represented by Collins as "Exulting, trembling, raging, fainting," by Pater she is taken out of time and reduced to the single moment of her ineffable smile. When Leonardo came to paint her he protracted the smile upon her face by means of mimes and flute players. Ultimately, he imprisoned it there by means of paint. For the curious result is that although her subtle smile is intended to express the fact that she has experienced everything, ultimately she becomes the spectator of her own experience. She smiles quizzically in esthetic detachment and is not only the heroine of all possible monodramas but also the


Monodrama and the Dramatic Monologue

achieves imperturbability through the modern means of ironic detachment. Yale University New Haven, Connecticut

reader of all dramatic monologues. She is mildly amused at Bishop Blougram and Andrea del Sarto, at Fra Lippo Lippi and the monk in the Spanish cloister, and she not only embodies in herself flux and passionate movement but also re-


Advertisement to Dramatic Lyrics (1842) and Preface Songs of the Cavaliers and Roundheads (London: Hurst

to ed. of 1868.

18 In my accountof the Frenchand Germanmonodrama I am heavily indebtedto Jan van der Veen, Le Melodrame

musical de Rousseau au romantisme: Ses aspects historiques

and those & Blackett,1857). pp. 139-59. For this reference in the next 2 notes I am indebtedto Klaus E. Faas, "Notes towardsa Historyof the DramaticMonologue,"Anglia,88 (1970), 228-31. 3"Robert Browning and the Epic of Psychology."
London Quarterly Review, 32 (July 1869), 329, 331; Fortnightly Review, 11 (Jan. 1869), 117-18; Athenaeum, 20

et stylistiques (MartinusNijhof / 's-Graven-hage,[1955]),

and to Kirsten Gram Holmstrom, Monodrama, Attitudes, Tableaux Vivants: Studies on Some Trends of Theatrical

March 1869, p. 400.

4 6

Westminster Review, 39 (Jan. 1871), 85. Tennyson: His Art and Relation to Modern Life (LonHallam Tennyson, Alfred Lord Tennyson: A Memoir

Fashion, 1770-1815 (Stockholm: Almqvist & Wiksell, 1967). 19 See Veen, p. 7; Holmstrom,p. 42. The text of the commentaryin Kurzbock'sedition is reprintedin Jean-Jacques Rousseau, CEuvres completes,Bibliothequede la Pleiade, ii (Paris: Gallimard,1964), 1929-30. 20 See Veen,pp. 48-79; Holmstrom, 46; ErichSchmidt, p.
"Goethe's Proserpina," Vierteljahrschlrift fir Literaturgeschiclhte, 1 (1888), 40, 42; Der Junge Goethe, ed. Max Morris, in (Leipzig: Insel-Verlag, 1910), 24. 21 Veen, pp. 88-89; Holmstrom,p. 52; see Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians, ed. Eric Blom (New York:

don: Ibister, 1894), pp. 411-12.


(New York: Macmillan, 1897), II, 329-30. Hereaftercited as Memoir. For Tennyson's comment on the dramatic character of "The Church-Warden and the Curate" see
Jerome Buckley, Tennyson: The Growth of a Poet (Boston:

Houghton, 1965), p. 197. 7 William C. DeVane, A Browning Handbook, 2nd ed. (New York: Appleton, 1955), p. 430.
Curry, Browning and the Dramatic Monologue (Boston: Expression, 1908); Fletcher, Modern Language Notes, 23

St. Martin's,1961), s.v. "Melodrama." 22 For the influence of the monodrama on Faust, see
Stuart Atkins, GoetAe's Faust: A Literary Analysis (Cam-

bridge,Mass.: HarvardUniv. Press, 1964), p. 26; Goethe, Faust, ed. R-M. S. Heffner, Helmut Rehder, and W. F. Twadell (Boston: Heath, 1954), pp. 60-61.
23 See

(1908), 108-11; Howard, Studies in Philology, 4 (1910),

33-'8; MacCallum, Proceedings of the British Academy, 11

Oxford Companion to Music, ed. Percy A. Scholes,

9th ed. (London: Oxford Univ. Press, 1967), s.v. "Melodrama"; Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians, s.v.

(1924-25), 265-82; and Sessions,PMLA, 62 (1947), 503-16. 9 Browning, Works,CentenaryEd., 10 vols. (London: Smith, Elder, 1912), i, 11; v, 25.
10 The Rhetoric of Fiction (Chicago: Univ. of Chicago

Press, 1961), Chs. i, vii, and viii. 'n J. W. Tilton and R. D. Tuttle, "A New Reading of 'Count Gismond,"' Studiesin Philology,59 (1962), 8395; E. J. Chiasson, "Tennyson's'Ulysses'-a Re-Interpretation," University of Toronto Quarterly, 23 (1954), 402-09. 12 Quoted in Donald L. Clark, Rhetoric in Greco-Roman

Education (New York: ColumbiaUniv. Press, 1957),p. 200.

13 John Milton at St. Paul's School: A Study of Ancient Rhetoric in English Renaissance Education (1948; rpt.

Hamden, Conn.: Archon, 1964), pp. 189-90.


Tennyson and His Friends, ed. Hallam Lord Tennyson

(London: Macmillan,1911),p. 327. See Memoir,i, 401-02.

15 Richard Henry Home, A New Spirit of the Age, ed.

WalterJerrold(Oxford:OxfordUniv. Press, 1907),p. 253;

Eclectic Review, 26 (Aug. 1849), 211. 16 The Letters of Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barrett

Barrett,ed. Elvan Kintner (Cambridge,Mass.: Belknap,

1969), i, 30-31. 17 Tennyson, Complete Poetical Works, ed. W. J. Rolfe

"Melodrama." In the 19th centurythe public stage reading,when performedby a single actor, was occasionallycalled a "monodrama" (OED). One of the most popular of these was Charles Mathews' series "At Home," dating originally from the 1810'sbut revivedby his son in the 1860's,which, accordingto PhilipCollins,consistedof "dazzlingone-man displaysof mimicry,in whichhe successivelyplayeddozens of roles." Otherswere the "IllustrativeGatherings"of the GermanReeds, which ran for many years in London, and John Parry's"Mrs. Roseleaf's Evening Party" ("that extraordinaryscene," says a contemporary,"in which the great mimic made his audience see a whole room full of people by simulation, and little tricks of expression and movement impossible to describe or to be repeated by another"). A variant on this kind of "one-man (or twohander)virtuosodisplaywas the sketch or playletin which one actor adopted numerous roles: Mark Lemon's Mr. Nightingale's Diary is an example-it was written for in Dickens, who took six character-parts it. For these oneman displays, the term 'monopolylogue'was invented: or the performermight be called a 'polyphonist'" (Philip
Collins, Reading Aloud: A Victorian Mettier, Tennyson So-

(Cambridge, Mass.: Houghton, 1898), p. 198. See also James Knowles, "Aspects of Tennyson(A PersonalReminiscence)," The Nineteenth Century, 33 (Jan. 1893), 187.

ciety Monographs, No. 5, Lincoln: Tennyson Research Centre, 1972, p. 25). Alternatively,he might have been

A. Dwight Culler
called a "pantomimist," for pantomime is literally "a playerof all the parts."In the originalRoman pantomime the actor carrieda 3-facedmask so that, if he wereenacting the story of Marsand Venus, he could imitate successively the angerof Vulcan,the embarrassment Venus,the alarm of of Mars.


W. Warter(London: Longman, 1856), I, 67-68.


The Monthly Magazilne and British Register, 6 (July

1798), 47-48; 7 (June 1799), 396-99.

39 Robberds, Memoir, I, 245. 40 Historic Survey of German Poetry, 3 vols. (London: Treutal & Wurtz, 1828-30), II, 311-16; I, 325-28; II, 3-7. 41The Life and Correspondentce of M. G. Lewis, [ed.

Jacques Barzun, Berlioz and the Romantic Centlury

(Boston: Little, 1950), I, 221. 25 Moore, Poetical Works, ed. Alfred D. Godley (London: Oxford Univ. Press, 1929), p. 303. Joad's speech in
Athalie is presumably that in Act III, Sc. vii, where his

MargaretBaron-Wilson] (London: Colburn, 1839), r, 23031. Hereafter cited as Life and Correspondence. 42 Louis F. Peck, A Life of Matthew G. Lewis (Cambridge,

prophecy of the destructionof Jerusalemand the coming of the Redeemeris pronouncedto the accompanimentof the orchestra. 26 I am indebted for my knowledge of Goz's work to Holmstrom,pp. 53-88. 27 For my knowledge of the attitude I am indebted to Holmstrom,pp. 110-208.
28 Travels in2Italy, Bohn's Standard Library (London:

Mass.: HarvardUniv. Press, 1961), pp. 90-91. 43 E. C. Knowlton, in his article "Southey's Monodramas," Philological Quarterly, 8 (1929), 408-10, is ap-

parentlythe firstto connectmonodramawith the dramatic monologue, but he sees it as leadinginto Browning,whose work I see as quite different.
44 Ternnyson's Maud Vindicated: An Explanatory Essay (London, 1856), rpt. in part in Tennysoln: The Critical

G. Bell & Sons, 1883), p. 199, under date 16 March 1787.


Heritage,ed. John D. Jump (London: Routledge, 1967),

pp. 198-99.
45 EdgarF. Shannon,"The CriticalReceptionof Tennyson's Maud,"PMLA, 68 (1953), 412. Shannon notes that the term"monodrama" echoed by AlexanderMacmilwas

In The Revolution inl Tanner's Lane (London: Triibner,

1887), William Hale White ("Mark Rutherford") has Pauline, the daughter of the French shoemaker, Jean Caillaud, do a shawl dance before Zachariah Coleman, printer,in 1814.Witha light gauzyshawlover hershoulders "Paulinebegandancing,her fatheraccompanying with her an oboe. It was a very curiousperformance. was nothing It like ordinaryopera-dancing, equally unlike any moveand ment ever seen at a ball. It was a series of gracefulevolutions with the shawl,which was flung, now on one shoulder and now on the other,each movementexquisitelyresolving itself, withthe most perfectease, into the one following,and designed apparentlyto show the capacity of a beautiful figurefor poeticexpression.Wave fell into wave along every line of her body, and occasionallya posture was arrested, to pass away in an instant into some new combination. There was no definitecharacterin the dance beyond mere beauty. It was melody for melody'ssake" (Ch. v). 30Hill, The Actor(London: Griffiths,1750),pp. 15-16.
31Rousseau, Pygmalion: A Poem (London:

lan in Macmillan's Magazine, 1 (Nov. 1859), 114. Since

Tennysonsaw Mann'spamphletin proof and made suggestions to him, it is, of course, possiblethat the indebtedness was the other way around(see Shannon,p. 400, n.). 4" Algernon Charles Swinburne, Complete Works, ed. Sir EdmundGosse and Thomas J. Wise, The Bonchurch
Ed. (London: Heinemann, 1926), xvi, 360-62. 47The Poems of Tennyson, ed. Christopher Ricks (Lon-

don: Longman, 1969), pp. 1046-47. 48 For the original title see Memoir, i, 402. Christopher Ricks notes that Tennysonapparently"intendedto revert to the originaltitle, as the words'or the Madness'are added in his hand" in the Univ. of Virginia copy (Tennyson, Poems,ed. Ricks, p. 1038). 49"Prufrock and Maud: From Plot to Symbol," Hateful
Contraries: Studies in Literature and Criticism (Lexington:

1779), p. 1.


Univ. of Kentucky Press, 1965), pp. 201-12; see T. S.

Eliot, "In Memoriam," Essays, Ancient and Modern (Lon-

32 Dr. [Frank] Sayers, Collective Works, to Which Have

Norwich(Norwich: Matchett & Stevenson, 1823), p. xix.

Hereafter cited as Collective Works. 33John W. Robberds, A Memoir of the Life and Writings of the Late William Taylor of Norwich (London: Murray, 1843), i, 447. 34William Haller, The Early Life of Robert Southey,

Been Prefixed Some Biographic Particulars by W. Taylor of

don: Faber & Faber, 1936), p. 182. Allen, "The Epyllion: A Chapter in the History of 5?
Literary Criticism," Transactions of the American Philologi-

cal Association,71 (1940), 1-26; Reilly, "Origins of the Word 'Epyllion,'"ClassicalJournal,49 (1953), 111-14.
51 Windelband,

A History of Philosophy (1901; rpt. New

York: Harper, 1958), ii, 410, 412.

52 The Passions of the Soul, Art. ccxii, in Philosophical Works, trans. Elizabeth S. Haldane and G. R. T. Ross

1774-1803 (New York: Columbia Univ. Press, 1917), pp. 45-46. 35In the 1807edition of Dramatic Sketches, Sayersnotes that since 1792 "many pleasing Monodramashave been publishedin this country"(p. 91).

(1911; rpt. New York: Dover, 1955), p. 427.

63 The Untuning of the Sky: Ideas of Music in English


Quarterly Review, 35 (Jan. 1827), 207. Selections from the Letters of Robert Southey, ed. John

Poetry, 1500-1700(1961; rpt. New York: Norton, 1970), pp. 172-209. 54Pater, The Renaissance(London: Macmillan, 1893), p. 131.