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The Variorum Edition of the Poetry of John Donne: Volume 7: Divine Poems (Part 1: The Holy Sonnets)

4.19  ·  Rating Details ·  199 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
Praise for previous volumes:
"This variorum edition will be the basis of all future Donne scholarship." --Chronique

This is the 4th volume of The Variorum Edition of the Poetry of John Donne to appear. This volume presents a newly edited critical text of the Holy Sonnets and a comprehensive digest of the critical-scholarly commentary on them from Donne's time through 1995.
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Hardcover, 606 pages
Published December 1st 2005 by Indiana University Press (first published January 1st 1631)
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Community Reviews

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Ken Moten
Mar 06, 2013 Ken Moten rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry-stuff
The second in my series (3) of reviews of John Donne as read in The Complete Poetry and Selected Prose of John Donne.

This collection of his Holy Sonnets (often called the "Westmoreland sequence") contains 19 sonnets written by Donne from his conversion to Anglicanism up until his death. These are metaphysical poems that deal with divine love, death, penance, his own grievances, and obviously mystical devotion to the trinity.

I have to say that while I was not shown anything new in regards to th
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Elizabeth Shafer
These are amazing, life-changing poems--not only the most famous ones such as the one beginning "Death be not proud", or "Batter my heart, three-person'd God" but also the less well-known ones, like the one beginning, "At the round earth's imagined corners, blow"
Andrea Hickman Walker
Jun 18, 2013 Andrea Hickman Walker rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: religion, poetry
These are beautiful, and I will definitely listen to them again. I do think poetry should be listened to, rather than read silently. It seems to convey more that way.
Ebookwormy1
Dec 12, 2013 Ebookwormy1 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Poetry is a tricky thing for me. One cannot rush through poetry, there is a quieting of the heart that must take place to receive it, and for me that quiet place is connected with the LORD Jesus, and the Bible as His word.

But John Donne, while not an inspired writer of Scripture, captures the struggles and mysteries of the Christian life in a compelling manner. When I can savor these Sonnets, they are a blessing and refreshment. I'm glad I set aside time to read just one per sitting and think ab
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Marjorie Jensen
I reread this for my Berkeley TA-ship with a Donne scholar. He made a lovely point about reading poetry as the rigorous discipline of attention and connected this focusing of attention with a Donne sermon about unifying the soul. Also, he looked at Donne's relationship to Petrarch, whose sonnets were the first poetry we covered this term, bringing the course full circle on the last official day of class. I might say rereading sonnet sequences this term helped me foster mindfulness and connection ...more
Drake
Feb 06, 2017 Drake rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Donne's thought-provoking "Holy Sonnets" are some of my favorite poetry. They can be confusing to read at times; but when the meaning of a sonnet suddenly "clicks," its brilliance and beauty become wonderfully apparent.
Aaron Ventura
Listened to these sonnets on a nice evening walk. I feel like poetry doesn't make a lot of sense sometimes without context so it's tough to give this a good review. Perhaps I will read these again sometime when I am feeling more contemplative. Or not.
Vahnabel0
Jun 17, 2009 Vahnabel0 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: those who like poetry.
This is my best bedside book!
Actually, I don't have a copy... YET. But I will very soon!

John Donne is, under my mere point of view, the BEST English writer (at least, the best of those I have already read).

If you really want to enjoy, read this poem: "Death, be not proud"
Yuri Bernales
I haven't read enough poetry to make a properly informed comment on the Sonnets' artistic value, but I do know that these poems are the first to move me intensely, almost to tears. Donne exhibits an almost psalm-like profundity, to say nothing of his mastery of the metaphysical conceit.
Alina
Jul 19, 2010 Alina rated it it was amazing
Brilliant, beautiful, and wonderful! And you must watch "Wit" with Emma Thompson after you are done reading the poems.
Red
Oct 14, 2014 Red rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dead-poets
their average age was nineteen
Harloe
Jan 08, 2015 Harloe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-2015-list
I really despise Sonnet 11, but Sonnet 10 is the most beautiful and comforting sentiment.
Gwen
May 30, 2011 Gwen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: relgion
I don't read much poetry. John Donne is amazing though. If you want a good introduction to his poetry watch the movie Wit. Holy Sonnets ten and thirteen are particularly great.
Ross Holmes
Aug 09, 2015 Ross Holmes rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Almost all the Donne that ends up in anthologies is very, very good. The stuff that isn't as widely published ranges from "pretty good" to "actually really bad."
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John Donne was an English poet, preacher and a major representative of the metaphysical poets of the period. His works are notable for their realistic and sensual style and include sonnets, love poetry, religious poems, Latin translations, epigrams, elegies, songs, satires and sermons. His poetry is noted for its vibrancy of language and inventiveness of metaphor, especially as compared to that of ...more
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“Batter my heart, three-person'd God; for, you
As yet but knocke, breathe, shine, and seeke to mend;
That I may rise, and stand, o'erthrow mee, 'and bend
Your force, to breake, blowe, burn and make me new.”
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“O! I shall soon despair, when I shall see
That Thou lovest mankind well, yet wilt not choose me,
And Satan hates me, yet is loth to lose me.”
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