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WILLIAM WORDSWORTH (1770-1850) LIFE, THEMES, WORKS



WILLIAM WORDSWORTH (1770-1850) LIFE, THEMES, WORKS

LIFE
-He was born in the Lake District
-He lost his mother when he was 8 and his father when he was 13
-He died in 1850

THEMES
The natural landscape of the Lake District influenced him strongly, nature aroused in him strong emotions and his poetic composition took place from the recollection in tranquillity of these emotions.
- Poetry describes incidents and situations from simple rustic life, transured by imagination and reflecting the way people think in a state of excitement. The preference for humble life follows from the assumption that men are better when closer to nature, far from the artificialities of civilization.
- Poetry should use a familiar, simple language (the language of men in the middle and lower classes) because humble country people li in communion with their objects from which language originates and voice their feelings in a more immediate forceful way.
- The poet has to reach the essence of things and communicate them in a simple language; he is a moral teacher. The creati process starts from an emotion which is recollected in tranquillity, recreated and enjoyed by the poet and shared by the reader.

- Imagination plays an important role, her function is to add new splendour to external, ordinary things and to modify objects presenting them in an unusual aspect.

WORKS
The Prelude
The excursion
The Lyrical Ballads

I wandered lonely as a cloud (Daffodils)-from the " Lyrical Ballads "
The poem was composed in 1804 and was inspired by the sight of a field full of golden daffodils waving in the wind. The key of the poem is joy, as we can see from the many words which express pleasure and delight: in fact the daffodils are golden, waving in a sprightly dance and outdoing the was in glee: they provide a jocund company and the sight of them fills the poet's heart with pleasure. The flowers are set in a natural environment made up of land, air and water. The words related to the three elements are: for land: vales, hills, tree. For air: cloud, breeze, stars, milky way. For water: lake, bay, was. All nature appears wonderfully ali and happy in fact the cloud floats on high; the stars shine and twinkle, the was dance and sparkle in glee. The daffodils, too, are not static like in a painting, but ali with motion. They are in fact fluttering and dancing in the breeze, and tossing their heads in sprightly dance. The sight of the daffodils amazes the poet at first because of their great number in fact they a crowd, continuous, ten thousand, host, ner ending-line. Yet Wordsworth is not interested in the flowers as such, but in the way they effect him; that is from inner to deter worlds and vice rse. The sight of the flowers brings the poet delight but he doesn't realize that at the moment but only later, when memory brings back the scene. It is clear that the daffodils ha a metaphorical meaning. They may represent the voice of nature, which is scarcely audible except in solitude, the magic moment when our spirit delops a visionary power and we "return to the enchanted unity with nature we knew in childhood; they may represent a living microcosm within the larger macrocosm of nature. Describing the daffodils the poet mentions only one colour: golden; but the whole poem implicitly suggest a wealth of colours: white = clouds; green = hills, vales, trees; blue = lake; silr = star; silr-white = milky way. In stanza 4 the poet suggests the perfect state of mind we should be in to hear the voice of nature; he says we should be in a sort of inner emptiness almost like that of the mystics when they enter into communion with God. This state of mind favours the poet's inner perception, which he calls "in ward eye". Tanks to this inner perception the poet's physical "loneliness" turns into a moment of ecstasy, which to calls bliss of solitude. Brief as it is, the poem presents a perfect structure. It is divided into four stanzas which correspond to the various moods of the poet.
Stanza 1_ Setting and shock at the sight
Stanza 2_ Description of the flowers
Stanza 3_ Relationship between the flowers and the poet
Stanza 4_ Emotion recollected in tranquillity
The devices used by Wordsworth in this poem are. Similes: lonely as a cloud; continuous as stars. Personification: crowd, host, (the daffodils) fluttering and dancing (line 6),(the daffodils) tossing their heads (line12);(the was) dance (line 13) company (line 16), (my heart) dances (line 24). The personification of the flowers make them ali as if endowed with a life and a soul of their own repetition: gazed (line 17). It conys the impression of the poet breathless when faced with the beauty of nature and unable to remo his eyes from it.








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