Critical Analysis of Tintern Abbey


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Wordsworth renews traditional themes through the device of characterisation. In Lyttelton's "Lucinda", his female character Lucinda "simply completes a definition of the good life, whereas Wordsworth's Dorothy offers a link with the past." The presence of a loved companion is linked to the stability and love that the poet feels for nature. "However, where Cowper is quiet in his sincerity, Wordsworth is much more earnest in his plea for Dorothy."

Renewal for Wordsworth means a renewal of passionate emotions and a strong sense of loyalty to the landscape, as seen in his poem Tintern Abbey. Akenside uses his imagination to write elegies and is lead by a nature muse, whereas Wordsworth is led by nature itself. Both poets celebrate landscape as something that shapes and guides their imaginative minds, yet Wordsworth goes a step further by seeing nature as "a source of regeneration."

The author also raises a discussion on the works of Milton. In one of his poems Milton writes a lament for his blindness. Ironically Milton's "endurance in the face of adversity" reappears in Tintern Abbey as Wordsworth gives a dreary account of daily life "rash judgements and greetings where no kindness" is given. In his renewal of tradition Wordsworth intertwined the form of elegy with that of landscape, combining it with "Cowper's feelings for the picturesque and Akenside's pre-romantic sensibility." In choosing to work with this type of genre, he worked tirelessly to incorporate Milton's elegy with landscape and nature. The final product - Tintern Abbey.

The author has attempted to present to the readers a number of poets and their contribution to the traditional theme of nature and landscape. In this critical analysis however, a lot more discussion should have been centered around our main poet of study, Wordsworth and the poem Tintern Abbey.

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However most of the major elements of poetry was studied. A summary of the poem was given and character, themes and structure were all done in detail. After close analysis and study of this critical extract one is left with the feeling that it was well done, and well presented.

* "Recreates the poetic landscape that has shaped his own imaginative growth"



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