1] This lyric appears in a rough draft in a notebook of 1847. It is dated "Oxford 1845?" in a copy of Poems (an 1850 reissue of Ambarvalia) presented by Clough to Charles Eliot Norton. The title is from the &Aelig;neid, III, 269, and may be freely rendered: "As the wind blows, so the vessel takes its course." "Qua Cursum Ventus" records Clough's regret at the estrangement of old friends resulting from the Oxford Movement. In 1845 several of his Oxford associates became Roman Catholics--among them, John Henry Newman, Frederick Faber, and W. G. Ward. If Clough had any one person in mind in writing the poem it was probably his tutor and friend at Balliol, W. G. Ward, but alienations and misunderstandings were so common at the time that it seems unnecessary to seek a precise identification.
Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department
of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.
Original text: Arthur Hugh Clough, Ambarvalia; poems (London: Chapman, 1849). LE B946a ROBA. The standard recent edition of Clough's poetry is The Poems of Arthur Hugh Clough, edited by H. F. Lowry, A. L. P. Norrington and F. L. Mulhauser (Oxford, 1951).
First publication date: 1849
RPO poem editor: Margaret Frances (Sister St. Francis) Nims
RP edition: 3RP 3.194.
Recent editing: 4:2002/1/30
Form: Long Hymnal Measure
Other poems by Arthur Hugh Clough