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His critical work, especially on Shakespeare, was highly influential, and he helped introduce German idealist philosophy to English-speaking culture.
The Romantics, and especially Wordsworth, are often described as 'nature poets'.
However, these 'nature poems' reveal wider concerns in that they are often meditations on "an emotional problem or personal crisis".
Considered mad by contemporaries for his idiosyncratic views, Blake is held in high regard by later critics for his expressiveness and creativity, and for the philosophical and mystical undercurrents within his work.
Among his most important works are Songs of Innocence (1789) and Songs of Experience (1794) "and profound and difficult 'prophecies' " such as Visions of the Daughters of Albion (1793), The First Book of Urizen (1794), Milton (1804–?
Scott achieved immediate success with his long narrative poem The Lay of the Last Minstrel in 1805, followed by the full epic poem Marmion in 1808. The early Romantic poets brought a new form of emotionalism and introspection, and their emergence is marked by the first romantic manifesto in English literature, the "Preface" to Lyrical Ballads (1798).
In it Wordsworth discusses what he sees as the elements of a new type of poetry, one based on the "real language of men", and which avoids the poetic diction of much 18th-century poetry.
The changing landscape, brought about by the Industrial and agricultural revolutions with the expansion of the city and depopulation of the countryside, was another influence on the growth of the Romantic movement in Britain.
The poor condition of workers, the new class conflicts and the pollution of the environment led to a reaction against urbanism and industrialization, and a new emphasis on the beauty and value of nature.
In the late 18th century, Horace Walpole's 1764 novel The Castle of Otranto created the Gothic fiction genre, that combines elements of horror and romance.
The pioneering gothic novelist Ann Radcliffe introduced the brooding figure of the gothic villain which developed into the Byronic hero.