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Transcript of Victorian Poetry
Dover Beach and Religio Medici
What is the Tone?
The narrator of the poem starts off with a calm tone, but toward the end, his tone becomes melancholy and depressing.
Lines 24-25: "But now I only hear/ Its melancholy, long, withdrawing roar..."
Personification is used in this poem to give inanimate objects human-like characteristics.
Line 4: "The cliffs of England stand..."
Matthew Arnold makes an allusion to Sophocles.
Lines 15-16: "Sophocles long ago/ Heard it on the Aegean..."
Alliteration is the repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words that are close together on the same line.
Line 23: "
the folds of a bright girdle furled."
What is the Style?
What is the Purpose?
The purpose of the poem is to convey a message of hope. It was also written to inform the European people about how things are changing during their times.
Who is the Audience?
The poem is a monologue. Since Arnold wrote this poem during his honeymoon, it is traditionally thought that the speaker is addressing his bride. The speaker is also addressing a silent audience.
What is the Occasion?
The poem takes place during the speaker's honeymoon to Dover Beach.
Arnold wrote the poem shortly after his marriage to Frances Lucy Wightman.
Dover Beach Author: Matthew Arnold
Matthew Arnold (1822-1888) is mostly remembered for his essays, but he started out as a poet. In 1857, he became the Professor of Poetry at Oxford, when much of his most famous works, including
Essays in Criticism
, were written. He wrote "Dover Beach" to link the problem of isolation with what he saw as the dwindling faith of his time.
Who is the Speaker?
The speaker of this poem is the author, Matthew Arnold.
There have also been arguments, however, that state that the speaker is an unknown character.
The poem utilizes iambic pentameter in some of its lines. However, in many other lines trochaic tetrameter is used instead.
Repetition is the repeating of a word or phrase in the stanza of a poem or the entire poem.
Lines 33-34: "Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,/ Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain..."
Most Important Line
Lines 13-14: "With tremulous cadence slow, and bring/ The eternal note of sadness in."
This line is important because this is when he starts to include the melancholy tone of his poem.
What is the Theme of the Poem?
The themes of the poem include suffering and time.
Although the speaker says that the world looks nice, it contains much sadness and misery. Time is mentioned when Sophocles is alluded to and the purpose of the poem was to show people how things change over time.
The Author of Religio Medici:
Dr. Arthur Conan Doyle
Arthur was born on May 22, 1859, in Edinburgh into an affluent Irish family. He worked as a surgeon on a whaling boat then settled in Portsmouth and divided his time between medicine and writing. Best known for his creation of Sherlock Holmes, Conan Doyle also wrote a number of other novels and various works of non-ficiton.
He wrote Religio Medici in 1922, most likely in response to the tragic deaths of his son, brother, and two of his nephews in battle during WWI.
What is the occasion?
Who is the audience?
Since it is unclear if Conan Doyle is speaking to any one particular person, it can be argued that he is speaking to all of mankind.
During the time this was written, he was becoming very involved with spiritualism and it is possible that this was a product of his missionary experiment.
It can be said that the purpose of this experiment was to help his fellow countrymen understand who God is and how he works. Sometimes bad things happen and we do not know why, but Conan Doyle explains that God is responsible for everything and everything he does is good, even if we do not understand it. We are equal is God's eyes and it is clear that Conan Doyle felt the same way.
This poem has a very final tone to it. It seems that Conan Doyle leaves no room for questions. It can be said that he also has a very indifferent opinion on this subject. He believes in what he is writing and accepts it; he is neither upset nor happy about what he writes.
Who is the speaker?
The speaker is Dr. Arthur Conan Doyle himself.
It can be speculated that the speaker is an unknown narrator representing humanities views on the nature of God.
What is the Purpose?
This was written during Conan Doyle's life when he was experimenting with spiritualism so it is probable that he was trying to spread the word of God.
This poem contains many themes centered around religion, health &illness, faith & doubt, philosophy, and God