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Matt VanDeWalle

on 15 December 2010

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Transcript of Ophelia

Interpretations of Ophelia The flowers in this picture are very symbolic Crow flowers at the bottom symbolise ingratitude or childishness Weeping willow tree over Ophelia is a symbol of forsaken love Nettles that grow around the willow's branches symbolise pain Daisies near the right hand represent innocence. In Act 4, Scene 5 Ophelia also mentions "There's a daisy" The pink roses growing near her cheak and her dress, as well as the white feild roses growing on the river bank may refer to Act 4, Scene 5 when Laertes calls her 'Rose of May'. They also symbolise youth, love, and beauty The garland of violets around her neck refer to Act 4, Scene 5 'I would give you some violets, but they withered all when my father died: they say he made a good end.' Violets are a symbol of faithfulness and also chastity and death in young Forget-me-nots below the purple loosestrife on the river bank carry the meaning of their title Pansies that float on her dress refer to Act 4, Scene 5 when she gatheres flowers in the fields ("that's for thoughts") and they can also mean love in vain The Meadowsweet flowers to the left of the purple loosestrife may signify the futility (the lack of purpose or uselessness) of her death. Sources Cited:

"Tate | Work In Focus: Millais's Ophelia." Tate: British and international modern and contemporary art. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Dec. 2010. <http://www.tate.org.uk/ophelia/>.

"Ophelia: Arthur Rimbaud - Poems." Arthur Rimbaud - Mag4.net : actualité, biographie, poèmes et documents.. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Dec. 2010. <http://www.mag4.net/Rimbaud/p This Picture shows a similar helpless expression upon Ophelia's face to the first picture of her. Her white dress billows over the water and looks sort of like angels wings. Some impressions given to us are that it seems like she is innocent, young, and beautiful. It also looks like this death was an accident. W. G. Simmonds. The Drowning of Ophelia.

On the calm black water where the stars are sleeping
White Ophelia floats like a great lily;
Floats very slowly, lying in her long veils...
- In the far-off woods you can hear them sound the mort.

For more than a thousand years sad Ophelia
Has passed, a white phantom, down the long black river.
For more than a thousand years her sweet madness
Has murmured its ballad to the evening breeze.

The wind kisses her breasts and unfolds in a wreath
Her great veils rising and falling with the waters;
The shivering willows weep on her shoulder,
The rushes lean over her wide, dreaming brow.

The ruffled water-lilies are sighing around her;
At times she rouses, in a slumbering alder,
Some nest from which escapes a small rustle of wings;
- A mysterious anthem falls from the golden stars. II

O pale Ophelia! beautiful as snow!
Yes child, you died, carried off by a river!
- It was the winds descending from the great mountains of Norway
That spoke to you in low voices of better freedom.

It was a breath of wind, that, twisting your great hair,
Brought strange rumors to your dreaming mind;
It was your heart listening to the song of Nature
In the groans of the tree and the sighs of the nights;

It was the voice of mad seas, the great roar,
That shattered your child's heart, too human and too soft;
It was a handsome pale knight, a poor madman
Who one April morning sate mute at your knees!

Heaven! Love! Freedom! What a dream, oh poor crazed Girl!
You melted to him as snow does to a fire;
Your great visions strangled your words
- And fearful Infinity terrified your blue eye! Two poems by Arthur Rimbaud Frank Bridge - from Hamlet: There is a willow grows aslant a brook The title of this song ("There is a Willow Grows Aslant a Brook") is actually a line straight from the play. Gertrude describes Ophelia laying in the river in Act 4, Scene 7. QUEEN GERTRUDE, Act 4 Scene 7

There is a willow grows aslant a brook,
That shows his hoar leaves in the glassy stream;
There with fantastic garlands did she come
Of crow-flowers, nettles, daisies, and long purples
That liberal shepherds give a grosser name,
But our cold maids do dead men's fingers call them:
There, on the pendent boughs her coronet weeds
Clambering to hang, an envious sliver broke;
When down her weedy trophies and herself
Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide;
And, mermaid-like, awhile they bore her up:
Which time she chanted snatches of old tunes;
As one incapable of her own distress,
Or like a creature native and indued
Unto that element: but long it could not be
Till that her garments, heavy with their drink,
Pull'd the poor wretch from her melodious lay
To muddy death. Ophelia by Benaiah This picture shows how Gertrude, in Act 4 Scene 7, describes what Ophelia's body looked like in the water especially showing the dress to look like a Mermaid's tale. this image doesnt show much struggle in the drowning which hints that this artist sees her death as suicide. also observe her facial expression which also seems less like she was commiting suicide. "The Rape of Ophelia"*
Her clothes spread wide and mermaid-like awhile
they bore her up: which time she chanted snatches
of old tunes, and sweet Ophelia floated down the river
past black stones until she came to an evil fisherman
who was dressed in clothes that had no childhood,
and beautiful Ophelia floated like an April church
into his shadow, and he, the evil fisherman of our dreams,
waded out into the river and captured the poor mad girl,
and taking her into the deep grass, he killed her
with the shock of his body, and he placed her back
into the river, and Laertes said, Alas, then she is drown'd!
Too much of water hast thou, poor Ophelia.
Poem by Richard Brautigan
Part of his book of poems titled "The Octopus Frontier" Richard Brautigan wrote this poem to tell how he thinks ophelia had died. He says she floated down the river to a fisherman who pulled her out of the water and raped her and killed her and got rid of the body by placing her back into the river. Innocent Accidental Death & Suicidal Death This piano movement uses bizarre melodies and harmonies to show Ophelia's decent into madness. Nikolai Medtner "Ophelia's Song" Ophelia Going Mad I believe that when this poem says 'her sweet madness has murmered its ballad to the evening breeze', the sweet madness was when she goes on rants singsing her songs and handing out flowers and the ballad is those songs that she sang.
In Act 4 Scene 7 Gertrude describes Ophelia laying in the river with the willows draped over her.
The last few lines of the poem make me think of how she is sort of seen as an angel with wings and an anthem coming from golden stars which may also mean heaven. I find it hard to understand if this poem suggests that her death is suicide or an accident because in the first four lines it suggest it was an accident being carried off by a river. There was also voices that were telling her that she had better freedom in her next life.
Next it goes on to say the wind blew thoughts and messed with her head, the seas roared which shattered her child's heart (maybe her heart maybe a babies if she was pregnant?), a handsome knight (possibly Hamlet) who in april had intercourse with. these are all tempting reasons to commit suicide and seems to make her go crazy.
Millais's Ophelia Victim My Chemical Romance - Desolation Row In a part of this song, it refers to Ophelia alot. Now Ophelia, she's 'neath the window
For her I feel so afraid
On her twenty-second birthday
She already is an old maid
To her, death is quite romantic
She wears an iron vest
Her profession's her religion
Her sin is her lifelessness
And though her eyes are fixed upon
Noah's great rainbow
She spends her time peeking
Into Desolation Row. When the song refers to her proffession's her religion i think it means that all she has seems to be her religion after losing her father and her boyfriend. Also, her sin (which may be getting pregnant) is why she should be dead. so she looks up to the sky and drops into the water and enters Desolation row, being the path to emptiness possibly. Songs Alluding to Ophelia
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