Sublimity on Route 4, New Jersey

May 18, 2011

Sunk in their urns; behold the pride of pomp,
The throne of nations fallen; obscured in dust;
Even yet majestical: the solemn scene
Elates the soul, while now the rising sun
Flames on the ruins in the purer air
Towering aloft, upon the glittering plain,
Like broken rocks, a vast circumference;
Rent palaces, crushed columns, rifted moles,
Fanes rolled on fanes, and tombs on buried tombs.

Deep lies in dust the Theban obelisk,

Immense along the waste:

John Dyer, The Ruins of Rome, 1740,

Some notes on the sublime, ruins, and romanticism.

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