John O'Meara

Shakespearean, neo-Romantic critic

John O'Meara Shakespeare Shakespearean Romanticism Literary Critic Novalis

from “A Word from the Author”

[My] concern has to do with what we can think is possible as a form of breakthrough into a visionary otherworld, especially as regards an objectively particular revelation that may be bestowed from such a world or the prospect of an actual otherworldly justification of our human experience, and this in spite of the continued effects of human tragedy ...




“a studied, intellectually probing, soulfully queried endeavor to reveal for our time—through a new look into the life and works and poetic writings of the German Romantic poet, Novalis—a way forward … toward attaining a reconnection with the spiritual world”. {Lacquanna Paul, from the newsletter of the Sophia Foundation, Starlight, vol. 14, no. 1, Spring 2014}.

“this book is a wonderful deepening into the life, poetry, and being of Novalis … a great contribution to the English-speaking world, to the literature about Novalis and his poetry and literary works ... 

... [Novalis's] devotion to Sophia comes to expression implicitly in his life and work ... As John O'Meara indicated to me in a private communication: 'of course the link through the tragic death of his beloved Sophie to the Mother, as Novalis calls the Sophia, is a climactic experience in the spiritual progress he was able to make.'   {Robert Powell, author of The Most Holy Trinosophia, and co-founder of the Sophia Foundation}


The author's comment:

“Here is the profound motif of the tragic death of the beloved perfected in one direction, just as Shakespeare had perfected this motif in another direction...

[See Shakespeare's Muse, Othello's Sacrifice, and Prospero's Powers, all reprinted in Shakespeare, the Goddess, and Modernity.]


“O'Meara is to be commended for his grasp of the philosophical questions that profoundly motivated Novalis and for his ability to integrate Novalis's life and thought into one narrative.”  {Bernhard Radloff, from a book review in Studies in Romanticism, Vol.55, no.4, Winter 2016}

A deeply personal, artistic and original meditation on that unique and living fusing of philosophy and poetry in the writings and biographical path of Friedrich von Hardenberg (Novalis). {David W. Wood, editor and translator of Novalis: Notes for a Romantic Encyclopaedia}


                                    from Chapter 9/Coming into the Visionary Life