Apr 14, 2008

Madoc and Literature: Restore the Madoc Plaque! Sign the petition HERE!

Not many historical incidents/legends have inspired not one but two epic poems! The Madoc story is one such. Robert Southey and Samuel T. Coleridge once intended to follow in Madocs footsteps. They were planning to cross the Atlantic and live amongst the Indians in a commune or "Pantisocracy". When this plan failed to materialize Southey's fascination with Madoc was displaced into his literary creations. The epic poem he wrote on this theme may not be one of the greatest products of 19th century English literature but it is a significant product of the Romantic imagination.

Southey published "Madoc" in 1805. But he is not the only author who was inspired by the legend.

Nearly 200 years later Paul Muldoon published his "Madoc: A Mystery" which is likewise based upon the Madoc legend. Both works deal with the theme of colonialism amongst others and can be regarded as political poems ( "Madoc" impilicitly and "Madoc: A Mystery" explicitly ).

Other authors who have drawn inspiration from this tale include:-

Madeleine l'Engle 'A Swiftly Tilting Planet' 1978
Pat Winter 'Madoc' (Madoc Saga, Book 1)' 1990
James Alexander 'The Children of First Man' 1994
Sanders Anne Laubenthal 'Excalibur' 1973

Surely this event/myth is worth a plaque for its effect on the literary imagination alone!


ROBERT SOUTHEY 'MADOC' 1805 ( text reproduced on iPaper )

Read this doc on Scribd: Madoc



Sign the petition HERE

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