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Both “The First Snowfall,” written by James Russell Lowell (a member of the Fireside Poets), and “The Snow-Storm,” written by Ralph Waldo Emerson display factors of Romanticism: the influence of nature concept through figurative language, the imagery concept through excessive details, and the infinite concept through mentioning of God and the Bible. These poems share similarities in how they achieve imagery, but, these poems differ in the types of figurative language used to obtain an influence of nature and with how they express the Infinite idea of Romanticism. The influence of nature theme, seen in Romanticism, prevails in “The First Snowfall” and “The Snow-Storm” through figurative language, but through different types of figurative language: similes and personification. “The First Snowfall” employs similes in lines 13 to 16 and 19 and 20; “The Snow-Storm” uses personification in lines 3 to 5. The simile in lines 13 to 16, “I stood and watched by the window, the noiseless work of the sky, and the sudden flurries of snow birds, like brown leaves whirling by,” describes the birds that the narrator sees as leaves falling, which presents an influence of nature. The simile in lines 19 and 20, “How the flakes were folding it gently, As did robins the babes in the wood,” again mentions birds. Whereas, the personification in lines 3 to 5 of “The Snow-Storm,” “...the whited air, Hides hills and woods, the river, and the heaven, and veils the farm-house at the garden’s end. “ personifies snow, (or “the whited air”), and claims that the snow hides and veils; snow, another element of nature, acts as Emerson’s gateway to bring nature into his work; Lowell’s birds act as his gateway. Lowell’s “The First Snowfall” and Emerson’s “The Snow-Sto... ... middle of paper ... ...God’s presence again. The two poets connect God and Nature by using Nature to talk to God and see God’s presence in daily life, which helps them to display their use of the Infinite feature. “The First Snowfall” and “The Snow-Storm” compare in that both poems share the influence of nature, the imagery, and the infinite concepts of Romanticism, but, the two poems only truly compare in using the same rhetorical strategy of over-detailing their settings to convey imagery; the two poets, Lowell and Emerson, both use figurative language to express an influence of nature in their works, but they use two different types of figurative language: similes and personification. In showcasing the infinite aspect of Romanticism, one poem directly mentions God, “The First Snowfall,” while the other indirectly mentions him through acknowledging events in the Bible, “The Snow-Storm.”
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