In the poem, “Dover Beach” by Matthew Arnold, the speaker begins the poem enjoying the sight of the ocean from the cliffs at Dover Beach. While admiring the view the speaker analyzes humanity and the world. Through this analysis we see a crisis of faith happen as the speaker realizes that within life there is no certainty or guarantee of happiness as chaos reigns supreme.
Throughout the entirety of the poem, “Dover Beach” alliteration is used extensively. In the first stanza, the speaker says, “Gleams and is gone;” (4). Alliteration is also used a little farther down in the same stanza when the speaker says, “Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,” (32). The use of alliteration within the poem adds to the overall melodic rhythm that the poem contains.
In the poem, “Dover Beach” there is a large element of imagery within the poem. An element that aids the imagery, making it more vivid and clear is the use of figurative language. The use of the metaphor at the beginning of stanza three strikes a powerful visual image, “The Sea of Faith / Was once, too, at the full, and round earth’s shore,” (21-22). The comparison of the sea, and faith both of which were found at varying corners of the world gives the reader a sense of the sheer depth of emotions the speaker is experiencing.
In the middle of the final stanza, Arnold uses a combination of rhyming, a simile and alliteration to work towards the poems conclusion. The speaker says, “To one another! for the world, which seems / To lie before us like a land of dreams” (30-31). These poetic elements combined not only create a dynamic element of imagery, as well as bringing about emotion, but it reinforces the lyrical tone the poem possesses.
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...their significant other and vowing faith to each other and to their dreams of future.
While the speaker declares their love and devotion to their significant other, the importance of this declaration becomes evident. While the speaker and their lover can be devoted to each other, they can count on nothing else, as the speaker says in the final lines of the poem:
Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night. (33-37).
With the chaos in the world, the speaker realizes that there is no certainty, no surety to the world, love, or joy. That the only certainty is that there will always be chaos regardless of the love people have for another, or the faith or lack there of they have in human kind.
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