• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

A Comparison Between "Porphyria's Lover and "My Last Duchess"

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

A Comparison Between "Porphyria's Lover and "My Last Duchess" Both of these poems are what is know as a dramatic monologue. "My Last Duchess" is about a member of the nobility talking to an ambassador concerning his last wife, who later on in the poem is revealed to have been murdered by the person speaking, who is about to marry his second wife. "Porphyria's Lover" gives an insight into the mind of an exceptionally possessive lover, who kills his lover in order to capture that perfect moment of compassion. "Porphyria's Lover" uses an alternating rhyme scheme during most of the poem except at the end. It is written in the first person and is known as a dramatic monologue. The whole poem is only one stanza long, and each line in the stanza comprises of eight syllables, this helps to give the poem a very regular rhythm; this gives a sense of order and control in the poem which is what Porphyria's lover seeks to gain over Porphyria. Unlike "Porphyria's Lover", "My Last Duchess" uses a regular rhyme scheme using rhyming couplets. ...read more.

Middle

He uses the phrase "As a shut bud holds a bee" to show his now complete power over her. For most of the end part of the poem he tries to justify his reasons for killing her: "The smiling rosy little head, / So glad it has its utmost will" In the last line of the poem he says "God has not said a word!" this is seeking further justification for his acts because he believes that if killing Porphyria was not wholly justified then God would have spoken and he would have been caught out somehow. "My last Duchess" is written in the first person, and the title of the poem refers to the speaker's last wife. The fact that is wife is referred to as a "Duchess" means that the speaker is obviously a member of the nobility. The speaker is extremely arrogant and similar to in "Porphyria's Lover" holds a certain sense of control over the poem. The first sentence tells us that the painting is of his former wife who is now deceased. The sense of control over the poem is extremely prominent in the first few lines. ...read more.

Conclusion

Now that his wife is dead he has gained the complete control over her which he sought over her in life; this is a theme which is also used in "Porphyria's Lover". We then discover that the person he is speaking to is an ambassador for the father of the narrator's next wife. The fact that this ambassador never speaks is another indication to the speaker's power. The theme of power is a theme which is used frequently in the other poem "Porphyria's Lover". In the last few lines the image of Neptune taming a sea horse is one that runs parallel with the speaker's wish to control his wife. In the very last line he says: "Which Claus Innsbruck cast in bronze for me!" This means that the speaker is exceedingly wealthy and gives you the chilling feeling that he may have had many wives before who he had killed for their fathers' money. I feel that "My Last Duchess" is a far superior poem to "Porphyria's Lover". This is because it manages to convey the similar images they both use in a much better way. They both use an image of the narrator's control and superiority, but "My Last Duchess" uses the image to much better effect. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Robert Browning section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Robert Browning essays

  1. A comparison between

    the point in which the Lover murders Porphyria, "In one long yellow string I wound/ Three times her little throat around". This is bold compared to "My Last Duchess". In addition, here the use of enjambment is effective because it gives the reader the image of the yellow hair being

  2. Compare & Contrast 'Porphyria's Lover' and 'My Last Duchess'. Which Poem do you Find ...

    He continues on this subject and says that even the smallest comment could produce this look that he hates; it is almost as if he is obsessed with the fact that he didn't have complete control over her. He even complains that she is 'too easily impressed' and that everything

  1. Compare and contrast Robert Browning's dramatic monologues 'My Last Duchess and 'Porphyria's Lover', by ...

    The poem turns on a moment when he considers how Porphyria has braved the storm (perhaps metaphorically to defy convention) to be with him. He looks for desperate attempts to preserve the moment at which he is in control of their relationship, 'That moment she was mine, mine, fair.'

  2. Compare and Contrast Tennyson's 'Mariana' with Browning's 'Porphyria's Lover'. What is the emotional state ...

    By using her hair to strangle her, he is getting his revenge because that is what she originally used to seduce him when 'all her yellow hair displaced.' He says that 'No pain felt she', suggesting a lack of her emotion towards him, and his regrets about his current actions.

  1. How do the poems "Havisham", "The Sisters" and "Porphyria's Lover" present the theme of ...

    The sentence structure also helps disclose the real Havisham. Duffy uses short sentences 'spinster. I stink and remember', again to emphasize the waffling. All this adds up to create the madness in Havisham. The tone isn't the same throughout the whole of 'Havisham'. It starts off showing her anger and bitterness 'I could strangle', but slowly turns a bit

  2. 'How effective an evocation of menace are the dramatic monologues 'My Last Duchess' and ...

    The audience knows him by his affiliation with Porphyria, as 'Porphyria's Lover'. His speech is very irrational, and changes direction very immediately. This gives the impression that the speaker in the poem is a very unstable character, which makes the poem a lot more harrowing.

  1. The four poems I have chosen are Hitcher, Education for Leisure, The man he ...

    It conveys that the hitchhiker has no worries in life and that he is a free spirit. The hitchhiker has a romantic way to look at life, he is relaxed and spiritual this is also shown by this phrase as it is in very casual speech, this makes the violence more unexpected and brutal.

  2. A Comparison Between 'Porphyria's Lover' And 'The Laboratory'

    The man worried that he may have caused his love pain, this is shown in the line; 'No pain felt she; I am quite sure she felt no pain'. The repetition of the idea that Porphyria felt no pain suggests the man had to reassure himself as well as the reader of the account that Porphyria, felt no pain.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work