Preview
Preview

Elaine of Astolat in Tennyson's The Lady of Shalott and Lancelot and Elaine

:: 7 Works Cited
Length: 2608 words (7.5 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Green      
Open Document
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Elaine of Astolat in Tennyson's The Lady of Shalott and Lancelot and Elaine

 
    The Arthurian legends have fascinated people over the centuries with tales of kings, noble ladies, knights, magicians, love, and death. Among those who wrote about King Arthur's reign was Alfred, Lord Tennyson. One of his poems, "The Lady of Shalott," became immensely popular for its moving pathos and mystery. Yet, the poem was based on a character from Arthurian legends - Elaine of Astolat. Several years after composing the poem, Tennyson wrote directly about Elaine's tragic love affair with Sir Lancelot in "Lancelot and Elaine," found in his epic piece Idylls of the King.  Although both poems share many of the same features, they portray the two ladies quite differently from one another. The Lady of Shalott is a fairy of sorts, residing in a magical world, while Elaine is a purely human character according to Arthurian legends. The differences are quite apparent when viewed according to the women's family structure, interaction with society, presence of magical elements, and manner of death. Thus, despite their many similarities, Tennyson makes each into a unique and completely separate figure.

 

    Both the Lady of Shalott and Elaine of Astolat share numerous similarities in their lives. Even the places they live possess a similar name. Most of the scenes in "The Lady of Shalott" take place in a tower. Likewise, Elaine retreats to a tower where she keeps Sir Lancelot's shield. Lilies surround each lady, literally and figuratively. Tennyson says that "the lilies blow / Round an island there below, / The island of Shalott" ("The Lady of Shalott" lines 7-9). Similarly, he calls Elaine "the lily maid of Astolat" ...


... middle of paper ...


... King." Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1973.

Simpson, Roger. Camelot Regained: The Arthurian Revival and Tennyson 1800-1849. Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 1990.

Tennyson, Alfred, Lord. "Lancelot and Elaine." Tennyson's Poetry: Authoritative Texts Juvenilia and Early Responses Criticism. Ed. Robert W. Hill, Jr. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 1971.

- - -. "The Lady of Shalott."The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Ed. M. H. Abrams. 7th ed. Vol. 2. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2000.

Trubshaw, Bob. "Fairies and Their Kin."At the Edge. Vol. 10 (1998): 33 pars. October 2000. <http://www.indigogroup.co.uk/edge/fairies.htm> (7 April 2002).

Tucker, Herbert F. Tennyson and the Doom of Romanticism. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1988.

White, T. H. The Once and Future King. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1958.

 

 

 

 

 


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper








This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
Essay about “The Lady of Shalott” - Fantasy is how you can best express the beautiful poem “The Lady of Shalott.” "Tirra lirra," by the river Sang Sir Lancelot,” in my opinion, is one of the best lines of the poem “The Lady of Shalott.” This line of the poem signifies the breaking point of the poem. “The Lady of Shalott” is a very detailed yet simple poem to understand. It was written by Lord Alfred Tennyson in 1832 and later revised in 1842 (The Lady of Shalott). There are examples of imagery and themes that are seen throughout the entire poem....   [tags: Poetry Analysis ]
:: 7 Works Cited
943 words
(2.7 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Tennyson’s The Lady of Shalott Essay - Tennyson’s The Lady of Shalott What used to be a simple home is now a sacred sanctuary, a refuge from all the filth of the world, a place to trap and stifle beauty, adventure, and passion. What used to be a simple woman is now an angel, a pure and domestic celestial being. I live in an era where women are considered most beautiful when isolated, helpless, and even dead; where a lady with passion is scarier than a bitter hag; where feminine is now a synonym for pure, selfless, and submissive; where sexism has put on the fancy dress of romance....   [tags: Tennyson Lady Shalott essays] 1556 words
(4.4 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Similar Characters in: "The Lady of Shalott" by Alfred Lord Tennyson and "The Highwayman" by Alfred Noyes - The poem The Lady of Shalott is written by Alfred Lord Tennyson. The poem is about a mysterious woman who lives in a tower and is very isolated from the rest of the world. The poem The Highwayman is written by Alfred Noyes. The main character is the very beautiful landlord’s daughter, Bess. Both the female protagonists are described as attractive, and they both prove themselves to be very brave. They each, in their different ways, die for love. Therefore they can both be described as courageous, but also perhaps slightly naïve....   [tags: Lady of Shalott, Alfred Lord Tennyson, poetry, Hig] 1503 words
(4.3 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay on An Explication of Tennyson's The Lady of Shalott - An Explication of Tennyson's The Lady of Shalott       Children often grow up listening to fairy tales.  Repunsel is one fairy tale about a girl cursed to live a life of isolation in a tower.  She longs to break free from seclusion and become part of the outside world.  She eventually finds her one true love and risks her life to be with him.  "The Lady of Shalott" by Lord Alfred Tennyson relates to Repunsel in many ways.  In this poem, Tennyson tells a story of isolation.  The woman in this ballad is also doomed to remain on her sheltered island eternally.  If she even looks out at Camelot, she will die.  She finally sees her "red-cross knight" (line 78).  The Lady of Shalott escapes fro...   [tags: Lady of Shalott Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1129 words
(3.2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes and Lord Tennyson’s The Lady of Shalott Essay - The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes and Lord Tennyson’s The Lady of Shalott In this essay, I intend to examine the storylines, themes and language of ‘The Highwayman’ and ‘The Lady of Shalott’ and then explain why I think that one of the poems is more powerful than the other one. ‘The Highwayman’ is a love story full of romance and adventure. The hero is the rakish highwayman of the title who dies for the love of his mistress – the darkly beautiful innkeeper’s daughter, Bess. ‘The Lady of Shalott’ is a mysterious poem set in the mythical time of legend Camelot....   [tags: Compare Contrast Tennyson Noyes Essays] 2186 words
(6.2 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Lady of Shalott by Tennyson and Lady of Shalott by Liz Loched Essay examples - The Lady of Shalott by Tennyson and Lady of Shalott by Liz Loched In this essay I will compare and contrast the two poems, "The lady of Shalott" by Alfred, Lord Tennyson and "Lady of Shalott" by Liz Lochhed. The two poems have very similar ideas and themes but are written in two very different styles. "The Lady of Shalott" is set in medieval times and is about a young woman trapped in a tower. She cannot leave the tower or even look out the window, as she believes that if she does a curse will come upon her....   [tags: Papers] 931 words
(2.7 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
The Lady of Shalott and Industrialized Misery Essay - The Lady of Shalott and Industrialized Misery Alfred Lord Tennyson, one of the mid-Victorian's most celebrated poets of the time, was genius in "eloquently presenting the anxieties and aspirations of his era" (Longman p. 1909). Trademarks of Victorian life included questioning faith, the Bible, the past, and the self. More and more people were interested in the industry of man rather than the uniqueness of nature, and progress of society proved that man was made to dominate and take everything for himself....   [tags: Lady of Shalott Essays] 537 words
(1.5 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Essay on The Lady of Shalott and The Lady in the Looking Glass - The Lady of Shalott and The Lady in the Looking Glass Alfred, Lord Tennyson wrote "The Lady of Shalott" around 1830, during what is known as the Victorian Age. Virginia Woolf published "The Lady in the Looking Glass: A Reflection" in 1929, during what is referred to as the Modernist Age. These works of art both deal with women who have important relationships with mirrors. The light in these stories has a great and different effect and meaning for each of these women. The importance and meaning of light are contrasted in these two tales, representing a change in writer's attitudes toward light portrayal....   [tags: Lady of Shalott Essays] 420 words
(1.2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about A Feminist Perspective of The Lady of Shalott - A Feminist Perspective of The Lady of Shalott        In an essay on feminist criticism, Linda Peterson of Yale University explains how literature can "reflect and shape the attitudes that have held women back" (330). From the viewpoint of a feminist critic, "The Lady of Shalott" provides its reader with an analysis of the Victorian woman's conflict between her place in the interior, domestic role of society and her desire to break into the exterior, public sphere which generally had been the domain of men....   [tags: Lady of Shalott Essays Feminism]
:: 7 Works Cited
2170 words
(6.2 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
I think that in Tennyson’s poems, The lady of Shalott and Mariana, Essays - I think that in Tennyson’s poems, The lady of Shalott and Mariana, the central female characters are presented to us in the way that Tennyson views women and their roles in society. There “Tennyson had great sympathy for women and the ways in which their lives were restricted.” Write the ways in which Tennyson presents the lives of women in some poems you have read. I think that in Tennyson’s poems, ‘The lady of Shalott’ and ‘Mariana’, the central female characters are presented to us in the way that Tennyson views women and their roles in society....   [tags: English Literature] 1443 words
(4.1 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]