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Verses on Various Occasions

John Henry Newman


Verses on Various Occasions is a collection of poems written by John Henry Newman between 1818 and 1865. This period of Newman’s ecclesiastical career saw his ordination as an Anglican priest in 1825, his involvement in the High Church “Oxford Movement” in the 1830s, his conversion to Roman Catholicism in 1845, and his founding of the Birmingham Oratory, a Catholic religious community, in 1849.

The poems in this collection span a range of Christian subjects, including piety, biblical prophets, Church Fathers, and Newman’s evolving views on the Catholic Church. Some noteworthy inclusions are “The Pillar of the Cloud,” which has been set to music as the hymn “Lead, Kindly Light,” and “The Dream of Gerontius,” which relates a man’s journey into the afterlife, inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy.

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