A Blake Dictionary

The Ideas and Symbols of William Blake

S. Foster Damon; Morris Eaves, fwd.

William Blake, poet, artist, and mystic, created a vast multidimensional universe through his verse and art. Spun from a fabric of symbolism and populated by a host of complex characters, Blake’s comprehensive world has provided endless inspiration to subsequent generations. For the reader of Blake, background knowledge of his symbolism is a necessity. In this volume, first published in 1965, S. Foster Damon, father of modern Blake studies and a professor at Brown University until his death, has assembled all references to particular symbols or aspects of Blake’s work and life, so that readers can see the entire spectrum of Blake’s thought on a variety of topics.

For this edition of S. Foster Damon’s classic reference work, Morris Eaves has written an updated annotated bibliography and a new foreword, included here along with his original 1988 index.

Paper: $35 | E-book: $29.99
ISBN-13: 9781611684438
Pages: 600 | Size: 6 in. x 9 in.
Date Published: May 4, 2013

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Book Trailer


  • An indispensable tool for the scholar of Blake and his complex symbolism.

    Library Journal
  • A rich treasury embodying the results of a lifetime of masterly and devoted research into every aspect of Blake’s work and thought . . . a momentous event in Blake scholarship.

    V. De S. Pinto
    Modern Language Review
  • T]he dictionary is stuffed full of entries that enlighten and guide us in our encounter with Blake. . . . It offers us an impressive mapping of a unique poet and thinker’s imaginative universe. Blake was, and remains, particular and peculiar, and he needs critics sensitive to the asymmetries of art and literature that lie beyond neater, more scientific, symmetries and algorithms.

    The Times Literary Supplement

About the Author

Morris Eaves

Morris Eaves’s research has been principally concerned with literature and the visual arts and with the cultural contexts of British Romanticism, especially the interlocking histories of technology and commerce. His current project, Posterity, is a speculative study of editorial theory and practice in terms of the audience’s historical power to preserve, alter, and abandon its objects of interest. From this angle he is exploring the social role of editing and its product, the …

Samuel Foster Damon

Born in Newton, Massachusetts, poet and Blake scholar Samuel Foster Damon was educated at Harvard University, where he earned a BA and an MA. During World War I, he worked in an airplane factory and taught bayonet skills at Harvard.

In his formally structured poems, Damon often engages natural and spiritual thresholds and moments of transcendence. His poetry was featured in the Harvard Poetry Society’s Eight Harvard Poets (1917), and he coedited Eight More Harvard


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