Through the ingenious works of poetry the role of nature has imprinted the 18 th and 19 th century with a mark of significance. The common terminology 'nature' has been reflected by our greatest poets in different meanings and understanding; Alexander Pope believed in reason and moderation, whereas Blake and Wordsworth embraced passion and imagination. The 18 th century was known as the Age of Reason, where the focus was on the search for truth and clarity in the world of disorder through reason. Alexander Pope displays his views and beliefs on world through his infamous poem 'Essay on Man.' Pope depicts the role of nature in the 18 th century by setting the poem in a garden. Not only does the garden parallel John Milton's 'Paradise Lost,' the garden symbolize the limitations of man. Pope wants to convey the importance of how man must accept his own limitations and lead his life to 'vindicate the ways of G-d to man.' However, we must yield to our pride and take responsibilities of our actions by not blaming G-d.
"Cease then, nor order imperfection name: Our proper bliss depends on what we blame." Through the poems of Blake and Wordsworth, the meaning of nature expands far beyond the earlier century's definition of nature. 'The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.' The passion and imagination portrayal manifest this period unquestionably, as the Romantic Era. Nature is a place of solace where the imagination is free to roam. Wordsworth contrasts the material world to the innocent beauty of nature that is easily forgotten, or overlooked due to our in sensitivities by our complete devotion to the trivial world. "But yet I know, where " er I go, that there hath passed away a glory from the earth." Nature, to the people of the 19 th century, is a di visionary and revolutionary tool that brings man closest to G-d. As the centuries unfold views, behaviors and beliefs change through time.
The conflicted view of the role of nature has been reflected in the poems of Pope, Blake, and Wordsworth throughout the 18 th century, a time of reason and Enlightenment, and 19 th century, a time of passion and emotion.