Irony in Richard Cory Essay

Irony in Richard Cory Essay

Length: 872 words (2.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Richard Cory was written in 1897 by Edwin Arlington Robinson. This sixteen line poem tells a lot about human irony. Richard Cory, a very wealthy man, admired and envied by those who consider themselves less fortunate than he, unexpectedly commits suicide. The most fascinating part of this poem is the reason why he shot himself when he had everything? Through their own mental prejudices and exaggerations of reality, the people, by putting Cory on a higher level than them, also created a communication barrier that later pushed Richard to commit suicide.
In the poem we only know Richard Cory by what the people see and think about him. His feelings, other than when he commits suicide, are never truly stated. Throughout the poem the only thing we learn about Richard Cory are the images that the everyday people have of a man who is seen almost as a king. In the second line of the poem, the villagers express that they feel inferior to Cory when they say “We people on the pavement looked at him” (2). The people referring to themselves as “people on the pavement” might be inferring that the people are homeless; in their opinion Richard Cory is seen as a king “He was a gentleman from sole to crown” (3). and they are just his admiring subjects. Even the name Richard Cory is and allusion to Richard Coeur-de-lion, or King Richard 1 of England. Then, the public goes on to describe Richard as a true gentleman, “And he was always quietly arrayed,/ And he was always human when he talked” (5-6). These lines show that the public think that Richard Cory never truly came off as very wealthy because he believed that even the poorest person deserved politeness and respect. The word “always” in lines five and six could suggest that th...

... middle of paper ...

...h will always remain a mystery. People can read the poem and come up with many different assumptions on why Richard Cory ultimately killed himself, but we will never be certain which one is right. This situational ironic story shows that appearances don’t always reflect the true picture of man’s inner being. Richard Cory is not a King; he is human

Works Cited

Bible Gateway." Bible Gateway. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Dec. 2013. .
"Richard I Coeur de Lion ('The Lionheart') (r.1189-1199)." The British Monarchy . N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Dec. 2013. .
Roberts, Edgar V., and Robert Zweig. Literature:An Introduction to Reading and Writing. Fifth compact edition ed. Glenview: Pearson, 2012. Print.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Irony in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s Poem, Richard Cory Essay

- In Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem “Richard Cory,” things are not what they seem. People saw that Richard Cory had wealth, power, education, fame and good looks. They thought that all this brought Richard happiness. They all wanted to be like him . No one got to know who he was but only knew him for what he had. It seemed that he had everything yet it was not enough to make him happy. His wealth did not give him happiness nor did it bring him friends. Richards’s loneliness is what makes him kill himself....   [tags: Richard Cory Analysis]

Free Essays
430 words (1.2 pages)

The Irony of Life: Analysis of a Suicide Character Essay

- “Richard Cory,” a poem written by Edwin Arlington Robinson, quietly exposes the irony of a rich gentleman’s life. It relates the story of a wealthy man who is admired by many of his workers and the people in town. He seems to have a perfect life; he is nice to people, well educated, just, humble, and wealthy. Despite all of this, Richard Cory shot and killed himself without an apparent reason. The main character of the poem, Richard Cory, is an individual who represents the irony of modern American life....   [tags: richard cory,edwin arlington robinson,life's irony]

Better Essays
1016 words (2.9 pages)

The Reality of the American Dream: The Poem Richard Cory by Edwin Arlington Robinson

- As Americans, many of us believe in this principle of the American Dream. The American Dream, in its simplicity, is the notion that anything, especially career wise, is achievable. We usually associate this concept with obtaining material things, such as cars or a fancy house. But, even if you achieve your American Dream, complete with a car and fancy house, does that really mean you achieved happiness. The poem “Richard Cory” by Edwin Arlington Robinson is a testament to this idea that although someone may have everything there is to want, that does not really mean they have true happiness....   [tags: career, material things, irony]

Better Essays
1006 words (2.9 pages)

Essay on Analysis Of The Poem ' Richard Cory '

- The seemingly-proud, handsome boy sits upright in his wooden desk chair. There is no noise only the sound of his rapidly beating heart pounding against his chest. The teenager clutches the metal barrel tightly and points the barrel of the gun at his head. He feels the chilling touch from the mouth of the gun on his warm flesh. Were there cruel judgements made about him from his so-called friends. Did he feel a great loneliness. Did his mind shout out that, Death will be my savior”. It is said that a person alone is in poor company....   [tags: Edgar Allan Poe, Poetry, Cannon, Irony]

Better Essays
1395 words (4 pages)

Deception of Appearances in Richard Cory by Edwin Arlington Robinson Essay

- In "Richard Cory", Edwin Arlington Robinson explores the deception of appearances. Richard Cory was a wealthy man, admired and envied by those who consider themselves less fortunate than he. Seemingly, Richard Cory was the model of success, dignity, and wealth. A standard to which every man was measured. However, Richard Cory didn't have everything; the desire to live. Through Richard Cory, Robinson illustrates how appearances can be deceiving and how depression and despair is not confined to the "people on the pavement" (line 2)....   [tags: Richard Cory Analysis]

Better Essays
502 words (1.4 pages)

Essay about Richard Cory and To an Athlete Dying Young

- The speakers in A. E. Housman poem “To an Athlete Dying Young” and Edward Arlington Robinson poem “Richard Cory” serve different purposes but uses irony and rhyme to help convey their message. In “To an Athlete Dying Young” the speaker’s purpose is to show the audience dying young with glory is more memorable than dying old with glory. In “Richard Cory” the speaker’s purpose is to show the audience “you can’t judge a book by its cover.” In the poem “To an Athlete Dying Young” the author uses rhyme to show the readers how the glory of the runner came and went in a dramatic way....   [tags: Poetry Analysis]

Better Essays
687 words (2 pages)

Analysis of Richard Cory by Edwin Arlington Robinson Essay

- In “Richard Cory”, Edwin Arlington Robinson uses irony, simplicity, and perfect rhyme to depict the theme of the poem. The rhyme in “Richard Cory” is almost song-like, and it continues throughout the whole poem. The theme of the poem is that appearances are deceiving. The poem is about a man who everyone thinks is a “gentleman from sole to crown”, who then commits suicide. Irony is used in the poem very skillfully to show that appearances may be deceiving. When reading the poem, you get caught up in the song-like rhythm and it intensifies the effect of the tragedy....   [tags: Richard Corey Edwin Arlington Robinson]

Better Essays
786 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on Richard Cory Poem Analysis Whenever Richard Cory went down town, We

- Richard Cory Poem Analysis Whenever Richard Cory went down town, We people on the pavement looked at him: Richard Cory Poem Analysis Whenever Richard Cory went down town, We people on the pavement looked at him: He was a gentleman from sole to crown, Clean favored, and imperially slim. And he was always quietly arrayed, And he was always human when he talked; But still he fluttered pulses when he said, "Good-morning," and he glittered when he walked. And he was rich - yes, richer than a king - And admirably schooled in every grace; In fine we thought that he was everything To make us wish that we were in his place....   [tags: English Literature]

Free Essays
1212 words (3.5 pages)

Essay on Analysis of Night Mother and Richard Cory

- "Night Mother" and "Richard Cory" are two pieces that both deal with suicide. The characters in both are so different, yet at the same time, very much alike. Both contain a lot of surprises and even somewhat confusing parts. The reader is left asking themselves why the characters in both of these writings had to end it all. Did they really have it that bad. "Night Mother" deals with a woman named Jessie who suffers from epilepsy and lives with her mother, who is named Thelma. From the beginning one can see that Thelma talks non stop and that Jessie is not very happy with her current situation....   [tags: Comparative Literature]

Better Essays
650 words (1.9 pages)

Irony of Earthly Power Essay

- People live life wanting everything they can’t afford. Millions of Americans idealize famous movie actors and musicians, and wish to aspire to that degree of wealth. Many people are envious of such billionaires as Bill Gates, and tell themselves they could have done that. Everyone wants to be rich. They feel that if they had all the money they wanted, they could truly be happy. The truth is that money and riches really don’t bring anyone an unsurpassable or measureless amount of happiness....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Free Essays
1337 words (3.8 pages)