Essay about Analysis of The Charge of the Light Brigade

Essay about Analysis of The Charge of the Light Brigade

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Analysis of The Charge of the Light Brigade

This particular poem deals with the unfortunate mistake of Battle of
Balaclava in 1854. In an attempt to retrieve their stolen firearms,
the British, lead by Lord Raglen, took their light cavalry to the
innocent Turkish territory, rather than the guilty Russians. In
self-defence Turkey protect themselves by attacking the British troops
causing hundreds of deaths but "not, not the six hundred".

Tennyson uses various techniques to involve the reader more
personally. He uses this to emphasise the pain and suffering felt by
the soldiers so the reader can really appreciate the physical defeat
but the emotional victory from the "noble six hundred". The use of
onomatopoeia in poems is generally used to make the situation more
realistic. Although the same applies in this instance, Tennyson adds
aural imagery to seem as if the reader is actually at the battle
listening to everything being "shatter'd" and "thunder'd". Also, the
words used for onomatopoetic effect are all descriptions of adversity
and hardship. Words such as "shot" and "storm'd" conjure up images of
the death in the mind of the reader.

The stanza layout is specifically used to reflect the journey of the
cavalry. In stanza one, they are striding towards the battlefield,
moving "half a league onward". In the second canto, they are still
travelling to the valley, and tension is mounting, even though their
leader "had blunder'd". Although in modern times this would be very
questionable when a leader makes a mistake when going into a
potentially damaging battle. However, they did not argue or "reason
why". In the third verse, the struggle commences as they are fired at
from all angles. They bravely push o...


... middle of paper ...


...t of Lancelot in "The Lady of Shalott". Although
one is myth and the other is real the definition of "bravery" is
universal.

The length of each stanza varies form six to twelve lines. The six
stanzas and six lines reflect the "six hundred" soldiers. The altering
stanza length echoes the varying number of soldiers left. The first
three stanzas have nine lines and their last line is "Rode the six
hundred" whereas the last three stanzas are all different with
different endings.

Throughout the poem we notice Tennyson's distaste for war. However he
has made the battle itself rather exaggerated to show that war is not
all about victory, bravery or patriotism, but death, blood and loss.
He does, nevertheless, respect the soldiers involved and tries to make
the reader appreciate the huge level of loss made by the mistake by
one, somewhat more powerful man.

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