Difference between Romantic Poetry and Victorian Poetry

Main difference

The main difference between romantic poetry and Victorian poetry is that romantic poetry felt respect and love for nature, while Victorian poetry considers nature more current, but not more perfect.

Romantic poetry versus Victorian poetry

Romantic poetry leans mainly towards nature or the environment and looks at nature in an uncompromising and romantic or idealistic light, while Victorian poetry leans towards the technological and scientific discoveries of the age or period.

Romantic poetry developed in the 1970s era in Europe during the romantic period (intellectual and artistic movement); on the other hand, Victorian poetry throughout the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901).

The attention of Romantic Poetry is to emphasize the influence of the relationship and the imagination of man and the mystical; on the other hand, the focus of Victorian poetry is not just the experiences and opinions of the poet; another person or being can be intricate, and man as not having a second nature, however, as ruler or monarch of it.

The linguistics of romantic poetry is full of expressions, conventional, dramatic and expressive, charged with emotion, praise of nature and flowery language. The linguistics of Victorian poetry is a modern language, medieval text, the grayness of life is highlighted, it can be easily understood, industrialized and realistic.

Comparison chart

romantic poetry victorian poetry
Romantic poetry deals with beauty, imagination, and feelings as major themes. Victorian poetry is the revival of British history during the reign of Queen Victoria.
Era / Period
Victorian age, late 18C and early 19C 1837 to 1900
The main focus was nature, beauty, emotions, personal feelings, subjectivity. The main focus was the Middle Ages, the past, heroic deeds, dominant characters, chivalric knights, and morals.
Individualism, freedom, irrational thinking and imagination Sensational, revival of religion, foundation, scientific study.

What is romantic poetry?

According to Wordsworth, ‘Poetry’ is the continual flow of strong imaginations. It gets its starting point from the feelings, calmly collected. Therefore, romantic poetry is the actual flow of feelings and concepts from someone’s imagination. “Nature” greatly inspired the romantic poets. Nature was the best subject of admiration for them, as it offers them calm, peace and great satisfaction. Supernaturalism, pastoral life, middle ages, love, nature and beauty are the main features/traits of romantic poetry. Wordsworth, William Blake, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Lord Byron, and John Keats were the dominant romantic poets.


  • The Pilgrimage of Harold, Lord Byron’s Son
  • Shelley’s Song to the Man from England
  • The Wordsworth Lines composed a few miles above Tintern Abbey and the Lone Reaper
  • Keats’ Ode to a Nightingale and Ode to a Greek

Kind of

  • influenced by nature
  • Wonder, Romance, emotional aspects involved.
  • supernatural elements
  • Alarmingly dramatic and expressive

What is Victorian poetry?

The word “Victorian poetry” denotes poetry first transcribed during the period 1832 to 1901, the peak of which was during the time of Queen Victoria’s power. Victorian poetry uses descriptions, depending on the minds that become the crossroads message of the poet. Unsurprisingly, the poets display a great deal of passion and emotion about their approach. The poets were interested in medieval myths, which often became their topics of conversation. Victorian poetry also expresses the conflict between science and religion.

For the most part, we find that Victorian poets rely on imagination and sensation to define the difference between religion and science. When there was the Victorian era, Britain was entangled in various social and economic problems. In this sense, Mathew Arnold emerges in the first place to contribute to Victorian poetry.

Realism and naturalism also played an important role in Victorian poetry. In the late 19th century , Victorian poets also seemed to use naturalism. In this century, Victorian poetry also seems to change its style and thought. Robert Browning, Thomas Hardy, Gerard Manley Hopkins, and Alfred Tennyson are the dominant poets of the Victorian era. Hopkins was the follower of the great scholar ‘Duns Scouts’. Mathew Arnold’s ‘Dover Beach’ and Thomas Hardy’s ‘Good Gray Poet’ are the best examples of Victorian poetry.

Kind of

  • Influenced by science, innovations and technology
  • To the earth
  • less emotional
  • Realistic
  • Occasional poetry is written to describe a particular event.
  • Human misery was shown

Key differences

  1. The era of romantic poetry was from the early 18th century to the 19th century , while the era of Victorian poetry began between 1837 and 1901.
  2. Romantic poetry affected by nature; on the other hand, Victorian poetry was affected by science and technology.
  3. Romantic poetry uses supernatural elements; conversely, Victorian poetry uses classical elements.
  4. Romantic poetry expresses emotions and affections, on the other hand, Victorian poetry was more realistic.
  5. Romantic poetry is about love, romance, subjectivity, and personal feelings, while Victorian poetry is about industrialization, science, and technology.

Final Thought

Romantic poetry and Victorian poetry are two different eras of poetry. Both genres are very separate from each other in their themes, subjects and interests.

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