Romantic Lyric: Characteristics, Themes and Authors

The Romantic lyric Is a traditional poetic expression that is used to convey an intense feeling, the result of a deep reflection or the manifestation of any kind of experience of the author as the"I"protagonist of his own work (Baez, 2017).

This poetic expression was born in Europe during the nineteenth century as a manifesto of the Romantic movement.

Romantic lyrical espronceda José de Espronceda, representative of the romantic lyric.

Its greatest exponents came from England, Spain, Germany, France and other countries where literature sought to vindicate the values ​​of freedom and love. However, its greatest apogee took place from the beginning in Germany

One of its essential characteristics is that it focuses on the author, therefore it focuses on the figure of the"I". This is how the romantic lyric ceases to be a descriptive manuscript and becomes the manifestation of the emotions , Experiences, thoughts and thoughts of its author.

By its human and emotional nature, the works delivered by the romantic lyric are highly dramatic, wild and violent.

Therefore, the spaces that are described in it can be unconventional (night cemeteries, desolate places or rooms highly charged with emotion) (Barba, 2013).

Themes in Romantic Lyric

The romantic lyric always treats the following subjects as a reflection of the life and interiority of the artist:

  • The claim of freedom
  • Love
  • Subjectivity
  • The exaltation of the individual (I)
  • The craving for personal fulfillment
  • The break with bourgeois society (manifested in norms, money and social classes)
  • Disregard for the norm
  • Generosity

In this way, the content of romantic lyric ceases to be a simple narrative or description of a landscape, and becomes the detailed description of the author's emotions.

For this reason, almost always the works that are included within this type of artistic production are wild, wild, mysterious and violent (Encyclopedia, 2008).

Few topics dealt with in romantic lyric are superfluous or meaningless, on the contrary, they are all a form used by the author to express his personal feeling.

As part of the romanticism , This type of lyrical renounces all rational argument and gives priority to feelings. For this reason, love forms a fundamental part of their productions.

Structure and language

It is a polymeric and musical composition, using sharp rhymes, parallels, onomatopoeias, alliterations, the asymmetry, and the polysindon to achieve a rhythm.

It is also responsible for the creation of new musical forms, such as the acute octavilla.

The romantic lyric takes up structures and musical forms fallen into disuse to give life to their songs and romantic compositions. In this way, he makes use of a language full of nouns derived from the plane of emotions (Britannica, 2017).

In semantic terms, the romantic lyric shows an obvious preference for feeling and pain, contrariety, life, death, grief, and general dissatisfaction with life.

Therefore, it is common to see how words like illusion, shadow, pain, frenzy, impulse, rapture, chimera, tomb, or passion are common.

The use of adjectives within the romantic lyric is also quite particular. This poetic composition tends to use qualifiers as languid, magical, tenuous, mysterious, lugubrious, somber, painful, creepy, horrifying, among others. In order to give a greater emphasis to what is being perceived by the author.

Its narrative type evokes the past, therefore, may have an anachronistic tone or be full of archaisms.

However, he always manages to keep a language familiar and close to the reader, full of metaphors that seek the evocation of a superior message (MILLER, s.f.).

Management and development

The romantic lyric is developed in a lugubrious and medieval style. Like the epic, romancero and legends transmitted orally. Therefore, it is possible that he treats poems of old.

On the other hand, historically the development of the romantic lyric occurred in two moments during century XIX. Before 1850, the romantic lyric was patriotic and social.

On the other hand, during the second half of the nineteenth century, the romantic lyric speaks of the"I"in a melancholy way and from intimacy.

This second form of the lyric would prevail in time, and would continue with its marked pessimism and notion of love as a source of irreversible pain, madness and disappointment.

Characteristics of romantic lyric

It's intimate

Romantic lyric includes the personal aspects of the author's intimate life, so the boundaries between fiction, art, and reality (the author's life) are blurred.

It is considered that there is a close correspondence between the artistic production and the life of its author.

Exhortation of the"I"

The romantic lyric exalts the individual, placing him in the foreground. For this reason, it is common to see how the author of the text is treated as the main character of the work.

Presence of religion

Within the works of the romantic lyric is common to find the presence of a religious god. In this way, it can be evidenced how always speak of some type of religion within this production.

Nature and mood

Within the romantic lyric establishes a close relationship between nature and the mood of the author.

This is explained in the way the author humanizes nature, endowing it with the feelings and emotions that he himself is feeling.

Authors and Works

José de Espronceda

Espronceda is considered the pioneer in introducing romantic lyricism in Spain. Before him, this type of poetic production had not been successful in his country.

He is the author of numerous works and songs, among which the"Pirate Song"and"El Verdugo"stand out.

His characters are always marginalized from society and question the way the Spanish society of the time was structured.

Rosalía de Castro

Among his works of romantic lyricism is the booklet of poetry that gave birth to the Galician Songs.

The structure of his work is circular, and is given under the voice of a young woman who sings without having the ability to do it properly.


  1. Baez, G.C. (2017). Scribd Inc . Retrieved from What is Romantic Lyric?:
  2. Barba, D. R. (April 10, 2013). THE ROMANTICIST . Obtained from Lirica Romantica and Premodernista y caracteristicas:
  3. Britannica, T.E. (2017). Encyclopædia Britannica . Obtained from Lyric:
  4. Encyclopedia, N.W. (July 7, 2008). New World Encyclopedia . Obtained from Lyric poetry:
  5. MILLER, C.R. (s.f.). Blackwell Reference Online . Retrieved from"Lyric Poetry:".

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