The Dramatic Monologues Of Browning And Tennyson — страница 2

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is extremely unhappy, using the word decay twice in one line. Continuing with this morbid mood, we are subject to more death, dies the swan or the woods decay and fall . It is clear that although Tithonus has this gift of immortality, he feels a prisoner in its grasp. He describes himself as a white-haired shadow , so we are able to deduce that he is getting older. He feels he is roaming like a dream , giving us the impression that he doesn t feel like he is within the bounds of reality, and he can t control what is happening, as he is incapable of actual action. The irony of the situation is great, as Aurora is reborn every day, whereas Tithonus is getting older with each day. He has to watch this taking place every day, and we can imagine how painful it must be for him to go

through this. Tithonus is just as pitiful as Tithonus, however, we feel more for Tithonus because he has no choice about his situation. There is absolutely nothing in his power he can do to better the predicament he is in. Also, with this monologue, we know for a fact, just as we did with ‘Andrea Del Sarto’, that Tithonus discusses his miserable existence relentlessly. It is almost like a prayer that he starts the day off with, never letting himself forget about his situation, however, we can understand the repetition as we know this daily monologue is all he has left. Looking at a different monologue by Browning, we are able to see that although ‘My Last Duchess’ and ‘Andrea Del Sarto’ share a writer, there are points which are dissimilar. The monologue deals with a

duke, showing a painting of his late wife to a convoy. Browning makes it clear that the duke was displeased with her behaviour and also makes very clear the duke’s personality. His arrogance and proud nature are apparent quickly and easily whilst reading through the monologue. As the duke reflectively studies the painting he recalls the way his late wife received flattery and compliments very well and had A heart too soon made glad and felt she was too easily impressed. The duke suggests that she had a wandering eye, She looked on, and her looks went everyone. This may have made the duke jealous, which also adds to his personality. While giving us strong, vivid impressions of the duchess, Browning himself paints a clear picture of the duke’s flippancy towards life itself. He

tells us that she put My gift of a nine hundred year old name in the same category as any other gift, making it clear that he had a very good and old reputation. He felt that simply because of the fact that he married her and gave her his name, she should have more respect for him. He asks Who d stoop to blame/This sort of trifling? So with this statement, Browning has shown us that the duke was someone who held a lot of pride in the fact that he d never lower himself or compromise. He tells the convoy I choose/Never to stoop. Unwilling to compromise, and showing his arrogance, he believed people should simply know what he s thinking. We are given a true indication that the duke had his wife murdered when he professes, This grew; I gave commands;/Then all smiles stooped together.

This line comes as a shock, because up until now, the poem has simply been about reflection. Then all of a sudden, we are given an unambiguous admission of murder. Not only is he admitting that he has had his last wife murdered, but also he is admitting it to the person who will be arranging the duke s next marriage. The fact that the situation is so ridiculous makes you almost question the duke s sanity. As they walk off to meet their company, the duke points out other works of art along the way, suggesting that his new wife will simply become another painting on the wall – another work of art. The duke s personality comes shining through in this monologue – his arrogance and egotistical nature is clear. The mood of the poem seems light hearted at first, but once we are made

aware of the fact that he has had his last wife killed, we begin to wonder whether he is crazy. The entire situation is so far fetched, and because we don t feel the reason for killing her was one of much credibility, I found the duke s character almost laughable. It is easy to imagine the duke in My Last Duchess repeating himself, because it is easy to imagine him in the same situation again. He had his last wife killed for such a ludicrous reason, that I don t feel it is beyond him to kill for an equally ludicrous reason again. However, I don’t feel he would repeat these ideas on such a regular basis, as say Tithonus would. In his dramatic monologue Ulysses , Alfred Lord Tennyson deals with a very different type of personality and mood. Ulysses is a restless seaman who