This essay will contrast the two poems ‘A London Fete’ written by
Coventry Patmore and ‘Clever Tom Clinch Going To Be Hanged’ by
Jonathan Swift. Both of these poems are about the hangings in the 17th-18th
A London Fete was written in the 18th century, whereas Clever Tom
Clinch was written in the 17th century. This could have made a slight
variation in what the poet had written because of the time variation.
For instance nowadays we are more civilised because of the new laws
have been brought in.
Although both of the poems were written about hangings, A London Fete
was more persistent on the crowd’s behaviour and response rather than
the condemned man who was going to be hanged. In the poem it states,
‘They brought the man out to be hanged’ this is the only line, which
talks about the condemned man. I think that Coventry Patmore focused
on the crowd more because he might have been confounded by their
On the other hand the poem, Clever Tom Clinch Targeted the condemned
man and his physical appearance. The evidence to support this is, ‘
The hangman for pardon fell down on his knees’ this is the only line,
which does not talk about the condemned man. In my opinion I think
that Jonathan Swift concentrated on the condemned man more because he
might have wanted to tell the a true story that he might have seen
when he was still a young boy.
The title ‘A London Fete’ has not got anything to do with the actual
poem itself, because the word Fete means a carnival. A carnival is
known to be exhilarating and pleasing. Likewise inside the poem the
crowd retort as if, in my opinion, they were fighting each other to
get a mill...
... middle of paper ...
...cts on the crowd’s behaviour. The hanging influenced
all men, women and children. ‘A baby strung its doll to a stick; a
mother praised the pretty trick’. A mother has influenced the baby by
admiring the trick. In my opinion if nowadays such things did happen
the kid would get punished. Two children caught and hung a cat after
the hanging had taken place because they were adapted to that way of
Although both poets had written about hangings they both had different
messages to convey to the reader. Coventry Patmore basically conveyed
that ‘violence would always lead to more violence’. Whereas Jonathan
Swift conveyed that ‘no matter where you are be true to yourself’.
Overall I think that A London Fete is better because it is much more
of a serious poem with serious thoughts. I think it has a kind of
story line, which made me carry on reading.
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