The Tayloring Shop: Essays on the Poetry of Edward Taylor in Honor of Thomas M. and Virginia L. Davis

Front Cover
University of Delaware Press, 1997 - Literary Criticism - 222 pages
0 Reviews
Reviews aren't verified, but Google checks for and removes fake content when it's identified
Some 350 years after his birth and only 60 years since the modern discovery of his manuscripts, Edward Taylor holds a place in American letters as the first important American poet. Exploring, and in several instances endorsing, that same hermeneutic within which Taylor wrote, the essays collected here provide readers with an understanding of some of the traditions of the past that informed the poetry of Edward Taylor. The objective is to make Taylor's intent more accessible to present-day readers. The bodies of tradition discussed here range from the Puritan concept of nature to Puritan casuistry. Three of the traditions presented - nature, casuistical, and elegiac - are analyzed for the way in which they help us understand the basic ideas in and the development of Taylor's poetry. The other three traditions - spiritual elegance, homiletic, and Psalmic - are analyzed for the way in which they help us understand the aesthetic behind the poetry. The focus of all the essays, of course, is Taylor's poetry. Two of the essays focus on, specifically, Taylor's Preparatory Meditations; two on Gods Determinations; and two on Taylor's minor poetry, in particular his elegies and valedictory poems.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.


Prefatory Note
Edward Taylor and the Traditions of Puritan Nature Philosophy
The Peculiar Elegance of Edward Taylors Poetics
Three Ranks of Soul in Edward Taylors Gods Determinations
The Homiletic Design of Edward Taylors Gods Determinations
Edward Taylor as Elegist
Edward Taylors Valediction and Psalm 19
List of Contributors

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 93 - For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
Page 87 - And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity : so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.
Page 198 - In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race. His going forth Is from the end of the heaven and his circuit unto the ends of It: and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.
Page 86 - For promotion cometh neither from the east, Nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: He putteth down one, and setteth up another.
Page 92 - O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted, behold, I will lay thy stones with fair colours, and lay thy foundations with sapphires. And I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones.
Page 198 - The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart : the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.
Page 198 - There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.
Page 98 - And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him.
Page 80 - MY HEART is inditing a good matter: I speak of the things which I have made touching the king: my tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
Page 81 - And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth.

About the author (1997)

A Congregational minister engaged in the task of establishing a spiritual code in a new country, Taylor explored the discursive possibilities of the metaphysical tradition of George Herbert, John Donne, and Richard Crashaw. His Protestant religious convictions made his vocation of teacher and minister difficult in Restoration England. When Taylor refused to sign the 1662 Act of Uniformity, he was prevented from teaching school, and finally, in 1668, he set sail for the Massachusetts Bay Colony. In 1671 Taylor graduated from Harvard College, and by 1673 he possessed his own parsonage and congregation in Westfield, Massachusetts. A year later he married Elizabeth Fitch, with whom he would have eight children. Their union lasted until her death. In 1692 Taylor married a second time; he and his second wife, Ruth Wyllys, would produce another six children. As a theologian, Taylor---like Milton and his Puritan forebears---needed to explain "God's ways to men," and both his poetry and his elaborate sermons endeavored to do so. Taylor's poetic meditations frequently dealt with divine love, while his sermons sought to teach the necessary doctrine that resulted from that love. But Taylor also tried to employ history, both cultural and personal, as an instructive device. In the early eighteenth century, Taylor inscribed an epic poem of over 20,000 lines that would later be published as A Metrical History of Christianity. Because Taylor preferred to be perceived as a minister, rather than as a writer, he went largely unpublished during his lifetime. But his use of metaphor, history, and language have established his reputation as an important American writer. His creative use of language has led contemporary critics to find his work particularly compelling.

Bibliographic information