Critical Analysis Of William Blake’s Poem The Tyger

June 23, 2022 by Essay Writer

The Tyger was written by one of the best English poets, William Blake. Moreover, the poem is filled with God symbology and it is often regardedas a religious one. It consists entirely of rhetorical questions without any answer. At the same time it is wonders why God created vulnerable beings and is also making references to nature empower and mythology.

The main theme in the poem is evil versus good. The poet wanted to capture this substance with visual imagery bound with other literary elements to incorporate these into the text. Throughout the text, it is possible that the reader experiments a feeling of awe about the tiger creation. The poem is made up of six quatrains, the first and the last ones are identical. The majority of the lines follow the same rhythm sequence: iambic tetrameter, but some are catalectic. The symmetry of the poem is important because it is related to how God could create the perfect lamb and the vicious tiger. However, it reflects the supremacy of God and his power.

The first and the last stanza introduce the poem’s most important question who created the tiger, how and why. The alliteration of the word tyger directly caught the attention of the reader and put the tyger as the central figure. The forest can be interpreted as the habitat or as a symbol of the mysterious atmosphere of God creation. Also, the poet is asking why God decided to create fearsome parts of the existence as well as the most joyful ones.

Blake begins the second stanza with some imagery as well as another rhetorical question. “In what distant deeps or skies burnt the fire of thing eyes?” He is using a metaphor to create an image of Heaven and Hell. In the stanza there are several references to Greek Gods. For example, “wings” are related to Icarus, and “ fire” is related to Prometheus ( he stole the fire from Zeus). The questions in this quatrain are used cleverly and powerfully to enhance the context of the poem.

The third stanza or quatrain. He uses another rhetorical question and he uses imagery to provide an image of God creating the Tyger. Then, the word ”twist” reminds us how corrupt humans can be. Blake also uses the image of the heart of the tyger begins to beat when God created it. The last question is related to how God asks himself about creating a magnificent creature.

In Blake’s four quatrains, he also made a mythological reference to Hephaestus (the God of fire and metallurgy). “What the hammer? what the chain? In what furnace was thy brain?” The poet presents a dark place in which a God-like Hephaestus can create this beast. He refers to a tiger created with metallic substances. To conclud this stanza, Blake uses the words dread, dare, deadly and terrors which describe something evil. He chooses these words so that the reader can imagine a dark and evil Tyger.

The poet starts his fifth quatrain with a powerful image as an allusion. ” When the stars threw down their spears, And water heaven with their tears,”. There is a symbolism in the words of these lines. The word “stars” means Angels (personification). When it says “Stars threw down their spears,” he is talking about when God’s Angels defeated Lucifer’s Angels by using spears (religious symbol). The last two lines of the stanza are rhetorical questions, but they are different from the other questions. “Did he smile his work to see?” is related to “Did he who made the Lamb make thee?”. Of course, God is the creator of the tiger and the Lamb (another poem written by Blake) what the poet wants to show us is that Gog could create perfect and imperfect creatures from Heaven.

About the tone of William Blake’s The Tyger moves from awe, to fear. At the beginning of the poem, the sense is mysterious, but then the tone becomes more ominous. However, in the fifth stanza moves into a sacrilegious tone to question if the Creator could indeed be good. The last stanza it is the same as the first one, but the tone becames curious. The morphing tone of ‘The Tyger’ is part of what makes it such an intriguing and captivating poem.

Moving to the speaker and the characters, the speaker in the poem is unspecified and never uses the first person. He or she is surprised about the tiger and his creator being in a double atmosphere of rhetorical questions and throughout the poem is asking the same question: why the same creator can make the tiger and the lamb? The speaker could be interpreted as humankind because he or she is concerned about the same universal questions. We could say the main character is God because is question himself and the secondary character is the Tyger.

To sum up, The Tyger is a huge metaphor poem because we can define God as humanity and Tyger and the lamb as good as bad actions respectively. The purpose of the author is trying to explain that a person could be perfect and also horrible, humanity is unpredictable. It is an awesome poem that makes people think. The incredible rhythm makes it easily memorable. 



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