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MR. G. F. ARMSTRONG’S NEW VOLUME. UGONE: A TRAGEDY. BY GEORGE FRANCIS ARMSTRONG, B.A.
“It is refreshing to come upon the evidence of original power in a poet. Mr. Armstrong may claim that honourable designation without impeachment.
In his verse there are no purloined conceits,' no running in grooves, no echoes from a richer muse.
[It] is melodious and rich and attractive; its charm grows with reading; and its flow is strengthened by the possession of thought.
Very few writers in this day could take up Mr. Armstrong's subject and make it tolerable. Respect for Mr. Armstrong . quickens into interest. The poet has a quick eye for character, and an artist's faculty for reproducing it. The persons of the drama assume an individuality and preserve it. It is not that the author labels them, or insists on their attributes, but that their own speech bewrayeth them. This is true art, especially dramatic art.
If his work is over-elaborate, the elaborations are good: if his arena is crowded with personages, these personages have each his own life and character.
We have quoted one speech for its vigour of imagery and expressive force. Let another extract be a sample of delicate landscape-painting, such as occurs now and again to soften the pressure of action and the tumult of rival interests.
This is a perfect picture of North Italian scenery, painted with the hand of a master. But Ugone was written in Italy; and the passion and music of its pages have a savour of the land.”-ORCHESTRA.
Power passion originality. vigour and boldness. A modern tragedy, with the scene cast in Italy, is in itself alone a sufficient claim for notice. An educated mind . real poetic taste and feeling."-STANDARD.
“Richness of thought, force of utterance, power of description, are the characteristics of Mr. Armstrong's genius.
His verse is copious, free, unrestrained, passionate, vigorous, now pathetic, now tender, always musical and beautiful.
We are afraid we have not been able to convey to our readers an adequate idea of the drama. It is difficult to do so. The canvas is so crowded, the scenes change so quickly, the lights and shadows come and go so fast, that it is not easy to give
a good account of it without seemingly destroying the artistic roundness of the picture as a whole. We hope soon to hear of Mr. Armstrong again, and to have some more of his exquisitely familiar little poems, which delighted us so much in his former book.”—EDINBURGH COURANT.
"The ability displayed in [his] earlier published poems has progressed to a fulness in the tragedy of Ugone.
It is curious, and pleasantly curious, to find dramatic and poetic instinct, so indicative of genius, throughout this tragedy. It is breathed in the dialogues and soliloquies. It is felt as an odour in lines of exquisite fitness. It rises to grandeur of utterance in the expression of noble and appropriate sentiments, and leaves upon the mind of the reader the grasp of a genuine poet. The plot is founded on a story of intense interest, and the incidents lead up each the other to the terrible catastrophe. The characters are drawn with great truthfulness, some of the female ones being adorned with purity and loveliness.
We can congratulate Mr. Armstrong on the production of a genuinely artistic work, and we hope further to hear from him.
We must think Mr. Armstrong a very young man, and therefore we have large hope of his future productions.”—SAUNDERS's NEWS LETTER (DUBLIN).
POEMS: BY GEORGE FRANCIS ARMSTRONG. “Great command of language, and a faculty for writing in verse with firmness and force of utterance.
A power of understanding and sympathising with the contradictions and moods of thought in a human soul at war with itself.” —ATHENÆUM.
[He] has a style of his own. displays, indeed, the fervent audacious rhetoric which distinguishes our youngest school of poets, but it has a sufficiently marked individuality. Repose is a quality which it would probably disdain.”—SPECTATOR. “Bold and nimble fancy; affluence of language; a ready supply of images.
The cast of his mind is essentially lyrical, and his poems consequently belong to the lyrical order. They have the characteristics of warmth and movement-lacking, almost as a necessity, repose. Perhaps the speciality of the book is a certain independence of view and tone, which gives much zest to some of the pieces.”—London REVIEW.
Three or four years ago died Edmund J. Armstrong, whose poems have since been edited by his brother, Mr. George Francis Armstrong. The latter now publishes a volume of his own, simply entitled 'Poems, which is likely to attract attention.
We shall not be surprised if this little volume causes a considerable fuss.
It is certainly well deserving of examination.”-DAILY TELEGRAPH.
“One of the choicest contributions to the poetical literature of the period the last half-dozen years have seen.”—LEADER.
“At one step the poet has taken his place among our true poets, and has gathered around him a rapt and listening audience.
Advancing years will more than fulfil the promise given in this his first literary venture.”—ABERDEEN JOURNAL.
“A guarantee of the possession of real poetic power, which, we trust, will soon blaze out in some further proof of it.” – FIFESHIRE JOURNAL.
“Mr. Armstrong is brother to him whose poems are favourites at so many homesteads. Through all the soul of poetry lives and breathes. The volume will undoubtedly prove a success.' -IRISH TIMES.
E. MOXON, SON, & CO., 44, DOVER STREET, W.
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WITH A SUPPLEMENT BRINGING THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD
DOWN TO THE END OF 1870.
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By BENJAMIN VINCENT,
ASSISTANT SECRETARY AND KEEPER OF THE LIBRARY OF THE ROYAL INSTITUTION OF