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Transcript of Ozymandias Poem
communicate an idea Nonce Sonnet: has fourteen lines, but does no follow a normal rhyme pattern Poem Info: Iambic Pentameter Plot Summary: The speaker tells of a man he met from a foreign land and a story the stranger told him. This stranger describes the statue of a King in the desert. The statue is decayed and shattered, and at the base of the statue, there is an inscription from the King, Ozymandias, telling all who see his immense statue to fear his power. However, his once-mighty statue has been reduced to a pile of rock and rubble, surrounded by nothing but sand. Themes: Power Poet Biography: Attended Oxford University, but was kicked out over his controversial writing
Eloped to Scotland with his first wife.
Left his first wife and married Mary Godwin Shelley, the author of Frankenstein
"Ozymandias" was written in friendly competition with another poet.
Their inspiration came from a statue of Rameses II. Analysis: Alliteration The repetition of similar sounds at the begining of words "boundless and bare" Used to emphasize the image of the barren desert surrounding the statue. "lone and level" Makes the reader realize the emptiness of this desert that was once a great kingdom. Assonance The repetition of vowel sounds “Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!’ / Nothing beside remains. Round the decay...,” a long “e” sound is continuously heard, Draws attention to these lines and allows the reader to realize the the conceit of the King Imagery “a shattered visage” “wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command” “colossal wreck” “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone” that “Stand in the desert" Visually descriptive or figurative language “boundless and bare” “lone and level” “sands [that] stretch far away” These descriptions allow the reader to visualize and comprehend the former-mightiness of the statue, its present dilapidated state, and the coldness of the dead King. This accentuates the loneliness and emptiness of the desert that once was the magnificent kingdom of which the ancient pharaoh boasted. Symbolism The use of material objects to represent something immaterial The Sand: The Statue: The Enormous Size of the Statue represents the Pharaoh’s narcissism and command. The Shattered and Buried State of the Statue represents the mortality of power and humans in general. Like the sand that eroded away the great statue, time eroded away the memory and power of the great King. Vast Sand that Surrounds the Statue a physical representation of time. Percy Bysshe Shelley includes these symbols to add deeper meaning and more depth to a poem and to reinforce his themes. Hyperbole an exaggeration This statement is obviously untrue, as the desert must end somewhere, however, the exaggeration serves to point out its great size. Used to emphasize the immense size of the desert Shelley calls the sand “boundless.” Apostrophe Irony Used to draw attention to the foolishness of the King, and to Shelley’s theme that nothing lasts forever. Pride Time The inscription under the statue says:
“look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!” This is ironic because the power he boasted of has disappeared, and the once-great statue is now a “colossal wreck” that would not cause anyone to “despair.” Incongruity between what might be expected and what actually occurs "My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: / Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!" When a character speaks to someone who actually is not there. We can see that Ozymandias is very passionate about expressing his power and dominance. Used to convey strong emotion Cummings, Michael J.. "Ozymandias." Cummings Study Guides. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 May 2011. Merriman, C.D..
"Percy Bysshe Shelley ." The Literature Network. Jalic Inc., n.d. Web. 21 May 2011.
"Ozymandias." Shmoop. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 May 2011. Percy Bysshe Shelley.
“Ozymandias.” The Language of Literature British Literature. Evanston, Illinois: McDougal Littell, 2000. 782.
"Percy Bysshe Shelley." Poets.org. Academy of American Poets, n.d. Web. 19 May 2011.
"Shelley’s Sonnet: Ozymandias." PoemShape. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 May 2011. Works Cited Power doesn't last forever Does not discriminate No matter what we do, our lives are insignificant The Pharoah built a giant statue to show his power, but in the end, he died like everyone else. kjnkjnkjn