The Victorian era is often neglected in comparison with the Romantic and modernist movements which preceded and succeeded it. This is not because the period lacked major poets, but more probably because it had no obvious ethos. Romanticism and Modernism were movements, with manifestoes and aims, whereas Victorianism refers merely to a period of time.
Another way of saying this is that Victorian poetry is diverse, and its characteristics are hard to pin down. There was a strong strain of populism, Stoicism, and public school spirit in the works of Rudyard Kipling, W.E. Henley, and Henry Newbolt, and an opposing atmosphere of rarefied aestheticism in the work of Oscar Wilde, Algernon Swinburne, Ernest Dowson, and Richard Le Gallienne. None of these, however, were among the really major Victorian poets. The three finest and most influential poets (considered as poets, since Wilde and Kipling were also major writers in other genres) were Tennyson, Browning, and Arnold.
In Tennyson and Arnold, there are certainly several characteristics in common, which influenced poetry during the period. Both took the Victorian religious unsettlement and the dangers of nihilism as themes. Both were melancholy and lyrical, often sentimental, in tone. Arnold also shared with Browning a love of subjects drawn from an eclectic education, and all three wrote about myths and legends, from Tennyson's Arthurian poems to Arnold's "Sohrab and Rustum."