Note: As can be discerned from the Blake concordance (Blake Digital Text Project or The Archives of Victorian Literary Studies: Concordances - William Blake), the notion of ‘error’ is used in a few ways. Error may refer to misguided notions or actions, whether conceived as illusion (vs truth) or fault or sin or condition of existence or wrong art (vs genius). Blake’s notion of ‘error’ is something existentially substantial. I have selected those mentions of ‘error’ which I see as containing a strong epistemological dimension.
Blake has much to say about truth and ‘error’ according to his foundational concerns of art, religion, and redemption in A Vision of the Last Judgment (1810). Truth is not propositional but is embodied in people. I am not reproducing the relevant passages here, but note especially the lines comprising VLJ-N84[b], VLJ-N85[c], VLJ-N86, VLJ-N94-95 ( E562-563, E565).
There are related and not as immediately related uses of the notion of falsehood and the lie. Two uses of ‘Falshood’ also convey the sense focused on here, to be found below. Related also are Blake’s conceptions of ‘Minute Particulars’, the definite and determinate, and the ‘bounding line’ (Descriptive Catologue of 1809).
Blake’s notion of ‘Falshood’ has been aptly put in an Adorno-esque manner by Jerome McGann:
From The Book of Los (1795)
5: Falling, falling! Los fell & fell
From Milton (1804-1811), Book 1
But Palamabron called down a Great Solemn Assembly,
From Jerusalem (1804-1820), Chapter 1
Loud roar my Furnaces and loud my hammer
Yet why despair! I saw the finger of God
From Jerusalem (1804-1820), Chapter 3
Let the Indefinite be explored. and let every
Man be judged
Jerusalem (1804-1820), Chapter 3 [plates 53-75], J55.57-66. E205. Copy E, Plate 55. Text only: Jerusalem (1804-1820), Chapter 3.
Studies of William Blake & Other Modern Writers & Thinkers:
A Bibliography for a Study in Ideology
William Blake Study Guide
Theodor W. Adorno & Critical Theory Study Guide
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