Imaginary Conversations is a publication consisting of five volumes of imaginary conversations, mainly between historical people of classical Greece and Rome, composed by the English author Walter Savage Landor. Landor's fame rests on this prose. The work is of great interest as a specimen of the poetic prose full of rich imagery & ornate diction as seen in De Quincey.
1 Background 2 Selected conversations 3 Critique by Swinburne 4 Interliterary mentions 5 Volumes in the 1882 edition 6 References
Imaginary Conversations were begun when Landor, aged 46, was
living with his family in
Queen Elizabeth and Cecil (1st Earl of Salisbury). Southey and Porson. The Abbe Delille and Walter Landor.
Volume II (1824)
Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. Washington and Franklin.
Volume III (1828)
Volume IV (1829)
Volume V (1829)
Epicurus, Leontion and Ternissa.
Published in The Book of Beauty (1844)
“ The very finest flower of his dialogues is probably to be found in the single volume Imaginary Conversations of Greeks and Romans; his command of passion and pathos may be tested by its success in the distilled and concentrated tragedy of Tiberius and Vipsania, where for once he shows a quality more proper to romantic than classical imagination: the subtle and sublime and terrible power to enter the dark vestibule of distraction, to throw the whole force of his fancy, the whole fire of his spirit, into the shadowing passion (as Shakespeare calls it) of gradually imminent insanity. Yet, if this and all other studies from ancient history or legend could be subtracted from the volume of his work, enough would be left whereon to rest the foundation of a fame which time could not sensibly impair. ”
Interliterary mentions Imaginary Conversations was a favorite book of the character Tibby in E.M. Forster's 1910 novel, Howards End. Mentioned in the book and film 84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff. Volumes in the 1882 edition
Classical dialogues, Greek and Roman Dialogues of sovereigns and statesmen Dialogues of literary men Dialogues of literary men (continued) Dialogues of famous women, and miscellaneous dialogues Miscellaneous dialogues (concluded)
^ H Van Thal Landor:a biographical anthology (1973) ^ Encyclopædia Britannica 1882 ^ Forster, E.M. Howards End. Alfred A. Knopf, 2011, p. 11, ISBN 978-0-679-40668-6 (US)
This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Wood, James, ed. (1907). "article name needed". The Nuttall Encyclopædia. London and New York: Fred