No living poet has ever held England - no poet but Victor Hugo has probably ever held any country - quite so long under his unbroken sway as Tennyson did.
He was the fourth of the twelve children of the Rev. George Clayton Tennyson (1778-1831) and his wife Elizabeth Fytche (1781-1865).
But by this time Tennyson was writing lyrics of still higher promise, and, as Arthur Hallam early perceived, with an extraordinary earnestness in the worship of beauty.
To the older and more luxurious lyrics, as reprinted in 1842, Tennyson did not spare the curbing and pruning hand, and in some cases went too far in restraining the wanton spirit of beauty in its youthful impulse.
During the voyage Gladstone had determined to offer Tennyson a peerage.
In the summer of 1830 Tennyson and Hallam volunteered in the army of the Spanish insurgent Torrijos, and marched about a little in the Pyrenees, without meeting with an enemy.
At this time Tennyson was brooding much upon the ancient world, and reading little but Milton, Homer and Virgil.
In April 1886 Tennyson suffered the loss of his second son, Lionel, who died in the Red Sea on his return from India.
In the winter of 1853 Tennyson entered into possession of a little house and farm called Farringford, near Freshwater, in the Isle of Wight, which he leased at first, and afterwards bought: this beautiful place, ringed round with ilexes and cedars, entered into his life and coloured it with its delicate enchantment.
To have really succeeded on the stage would have given Tennyson more gratification than anything else, but he was not permitted to live long enough to see this blossom also added to the heavy garland of his glory.