In any piece of lyrical poetry, authors must masterfully use the language of the poem to covey the intended meaning. In order to ensure the meaning is not lost, it is imperative that the author incorporates various aspects of the narrative to escalate the poem past its face value. Alfred Tennyson’s poem “The Lady of Shallot” is no exception to the rule. From lines like “blue unclouded weather” and “the gemmy bridle glitter’d free”, one can draw that descriptive language is Tennyson’s tool to revealing the underlying meaning (Griffith 334). In each of the four parts of “The Lady of Shallot”, Tennyson uses descriptive language to convey his intended meaning to the audience.
Tennyson uses Part I to show the setting of the poem, and introduces the Lady of Shallot to the audience. Part I starts off with a description of “Long fields of barley and…rye that clothe the wold (hilly, open country)” (Griffith 332). From this line in the opening stanza, the reader already gets a sense of where the poem takes place, a gently rolling countryside of utmost beauty. In the second stanza, lines like “Willows whiten, aspens quiver, little breezes dusk and shiver” further our mental picture of the setting (Griffith 332). Later in the stanza, we learn of “four gray walls, and four gray towers” and that “the silent isle imbowers the Lady of Shallot” (Griffith 332).
Tennyson’s description in the last couple of lines of this stanza introduces the Lady of Shallot and gives a feeling of her isolation (which is quite important toward the poem’s meaning, and will be built on later in the piece). The final stanza in Part I tells how early morning workers “hear a song that echoes cheerly ...
... middle of paper ...
...tiful and powerful. As soon as the Lady of Shallot decides to leave the tower, she knows her fate. And after she dies, the people of Camelot finally learn of the “fairy Lady of Shallot” (Griffith 332).
Tennyson’s descriptive language in “The Lady of Shallot” is beautiful, and drastically enhances the meaning of the poem. The description of everything in the outside world is so vivid that it brings the Lady of Shallot to loose everything she has ever known. She is willing to give up her life to experience the brilliant things seen in her mirror…even if it is only for a few moments. Without Tennyson’s eloquent descriptiveness, “The Lady of Shallot” is much more than mere words.
Griffith, Kelley. “The Lady of Shallot” Narrative Fiction. Ed. Ted Buchholz. Fort Worth: Harcourt Brace College Publishers. 1994. 332-336.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The Lady of Shallot Alfred, Lord Tennyson, was known for his pictorial poetry, characterizes as "painterly," "picturesque" with visual detail and images that represent mood, situation and carry emotion" (ENG 103 Lecture on Victorian Age and Literature). The imagery of emotion is especially evident in the poet's depiction of nature, in the form of melancholy. In examining "The Lady of Shallot," the sense of eminent gloom of destiny is illustrated. Through the personification of nature, a vivid glimpse into a lady doomed by her fate.... [tags: Lady of Shalott Essays]
428 words (1.2 pages)
- The Lady of Shallot "The Lady of Shallot," by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, acts as a voice for people struggling with materialism of the industrial age. Tennyson became famous for reflecting the "idealism of an industrious society that was nonetheless racked by deep doubts about its materialism" (The Longman Anthology Of British Literature p. 1908). The curse of the mysterious lady of the poem could be thought of as the curse of the people subcombing to the dreaded materialism and giving up the Victorian innocent ideals.... [tags: Lady of Shalott Essays]
625 words (1.8 pages)
- One of the talents necessary for great fiction is the ability to use descriptive language to captivate the audience and to allow them to visualize characters and scenery. By using specific words and phrases, writers focus attention and stoke the imagination, to enable the reader to create in his/her own mind a unique and detailed setting. A striking way to illuminate the importance of this ability is to juxtapose an authors original text with less colorful wording. For example, one can take certain exemplary samples from two different stories, John Updike’s “A & P” and Anton Chekhov’s “The Lady with the Dog” and dull down the language, to state it in a more factual manner, completely taki... [tags: Compare Contrast, Comparing]
1729 words (4.9 pages)
- Lady Of Shallot The Lady of Shallot is an interesting poem by Alfred Lord Tennyson. In this poem he tells a story of sadness and disappointment. This story is showing how a person crushed his life somehow. My guess would be he had his heart broken and felt trapped in depression. In the beginning he talks about the scenery and how beautiful it is but he can’t get out to go where everything is ok in Camelot. He sees people enjoying their lives and longs to join them outside in the freedom of the world.... [tags: essays research papers]
412 words (1.2 pages)
- During one’s life, one must step out into the real world and experience all of what the world has to offer. In order to attain a well-balanced life both mentally and socially, one may seek any way possible to live life to the fullest. We were put on this earth to live- not just simply by breathing in and out everyday, and making life the best it can possibly be. It has been said that you have not really died if you have lived. This theory has been applied to several pieces of literature. In the book The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde and “The Lady of Shallot” by Alfred Lord Tennyson, two characters have not lived their life to the fullest extent.... [tags: essays research papers]
1135 words (3.2 pages)
- Henry James’ Portrait of a Lady "On her long journey from Rome her mind had been given up to vagueness; she was unable to question the future. She performed this journey with sightless eyes and took little pleasure in the countries she traversed, decked out though they were in the richest freshness of spring. Her thoughts followed their course through other countries‹strange-looking, dimly-lighted, pathless lands, in which there was no change of seasons, but only as it seemed, a perpetual dreariness of winter.... [tags: Portrait Lady]
1271 words (3.6 pages)
A Comparison of The Lady of Shallot by Alfred Lord Tennyson, My Last Duchess by Robert Browning, La Belle Dame Sans Merci by Keats and To His Coy Mist
- A Comparison of The Lady of Shallot by Alfred Lord Tennyson, My Last Duchess by Robert Browning, La Belle Dame Sans Merci by Keats and To His Coy Mistress by Andrew Marvell In this essay I am going to compare four poems: 1. The Lady of Shallot- Alfred Lord Tennyson 2. My Last Duchess- Robert Browning 3. La Belle Dame Sans Merci- John Keats 4. To his Coy Mistress - Andrew Marvell The connecting theme of all the poems is that are all written about a woman in love or who is loved by someone else.... [tags: Papers]
1277 words (3.6 pages)
- Since English is essential in getting by in America, people are more likely to judge a person by his/her English mastery. If you speak English well and fluently, you are quite respected. In other words, if you speak “Broken” English, they may subconsciously think of you as less intelligent than people who speak Standard English. However, does a person’s language mastery reflect complete personality. Since it has not been officially approved that language reveals complete personality, it is inaccurate to judge a person by his/her language mastery.... [tags: Language]
1049 words (3 pages)
- Tone in Sylvia Plath's "Lady Lazarus" In “Lady Lazarus” by Sylvia Plath, the speaker’s tone is revealed through many different poetic aspects. Throughout her writing, the speaker’s attitude towards death appears to be happy but, when looking more closely at Plath’s use of poetic devices her attitude is bitter. Shown mainly through the diction, images, sounds and repetition, this depressing tone emphasizes the speaker’s feelings about death. First, diction or word choice used throughout this poem depicts apart the meaning and stresses the tone.... [tags: Sylvia Plath Lady Lazarus Essays]
1867 words (5.3 pages)
- French grammarian, Dominique Bonhours, proved on his deathbed that a grammarians work is never done when he gazed at those around his deathbed and whispered, "I am about to- or I am going to- die; either expression is used." Language is in a constant state of flux and there is always controversy to changes in and attitudes towards language. This is not something new, as it was the Romans that said the Vikings speech sounded like the 'cawing of crows' because of their harsh guttural sounds.... [tags: Linguistics]
723 words (2.1 pages)