William Blake and the Myths of Britain


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From Atlantis to the Deists of the Napoleonic Wars, Whittaker (English, Falmouth College of Art) describes the revival of interest in the legends of Britain during the 18th century and how Black applied them in his prophetic histories of the giant Albion. He points out that myths such as the Druids and the songs of Ossian were often used to justify overseas conquests, Blake appropriated a radical view of antiquarian history by exploiting links between the human sacrifices of ancient tyrants and those of contemporary wars.

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