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Comparison between Tennyson's 'charge of the light brigade' and Owen's 'Dulce et Decorum Est'.

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Introduction

Comparison between Tennyson's 'charge of the light brigade' and Owen's 'Dulce et Decorum Est'. During this essay I am going to try and prove to you that these two war poems have a different meaning to them and a different message behind them. Obviously they are both trying to get the point across about what the poets believe war to be like but I feel Wilfred Owen's poem is a lot more detailed whereas Alfred Lord Tennyson's has a more vague approach! Firstly, I will discuss Tennyson's impression of war and how he shows us that war is full of honour, bravery and heroism. Throughout this poem Tennyson sticks to a very brief description of soldiers, death and general war! Tennyson is trying to tell us that the soldiers who fought in this war were brave and should be honoured and respected. Proof of this is in the quote 'Honour the charge they made'. From Tennyson's point of view he must of felt that the soldiers were brave and courageous enough for us to honour them which is asked of us in this quote. In this poem it is as if there is no hope for these soldiers, like they are already dead and this effect is proven by many of the gloomy quotes which are portrayed throughout the poem- "while horse and hero fell" emphasising the word "fell". ...read more.

Middle

So when writing this line Tennyson knows that it will catch the readers' eye because of how plain and upfront it is. The quote 'plunged in the battery smoke' also shows bravery because the six hundred are not just walking cautiously into the smoke they are plunging into the unknown. The word 'plunging' is emphasising the way they entered the smoke, they attacked the smoke with no fear, there could have been anything waiting for them in the smoke but they carried on. They do not care if the smoke is blocking their view, they bravely plunge through the smoke not knowing or caring what risk they are taking! This is why I think these soldiers were brave. 'Boldly they rode and well' - finally I think proves that Tennyson feels that soldiers who are willing to die for their country should be honoured and respected. Honour and pride is shown here as they rode together without fear as a force. Almost as if they were riding and nothing could stand in their way, so therefore very proud to be English! So these techniques such as metaphors, alliteration, similes and repetition are used to create an atmosphere in the poem to make it sound as brave or heroic as Tennyson likes! ...read more.

Conclusion

Also on many of these words there is an " 'd " or a " d' " and this is to also emphasise the 'thud ' of the horses in the form of repetition. So when we hear horses galloping through the sound of the words we see heroism in the form of sound. Owen however does not concentrate on sound techniques as much, he prefers to rhyme with 'sacks' and 'backs' or ' sludge' and 'trudge'. Another way of creating atmosphere is the way he uses the effects of gas throughout the poem! The enemies main weapon in this poem is gas, although the word ' gas ' is only mentioned once it is referred to several times. 'And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime' lime green is the colour of chlorine gas so Owen is making us think about the burning affects. Another phrase is 'through a green sea' here there is repetition of the colour of the gas but there is a change in elements, you cannot escape water. The metaphor is extended to link with the image of drowning so vision becomes blurred as it does in water. I am now at the end of my essay and hope that I have proved to you that these two poems about war are extremely different and that war can mean bravery and heroism or hell and disaster! BEN DUERDEN ...read more.

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