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Compare and contrast Blake and Wordsworth's view of London William Wordsworth and William Blake both wrote popular poems about London

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Introduction

Compare and contrast Blake and Wordsworth's view of London William Wordsworth and William Blake both wrote popular poems about London, but their views of it were very different, this could be because of the way they grew up. Blake was brought up in the city and saw the more poverty-driven and polluted side to London whereas Wordsworth writes about the beauty and peaceful view of London. He may have seen this side because he was born and bred in the beautiful countryside in the North of England. Blake is walking down the dirty streets of the capital city and talks about the pain and emotion in the people he sees, "in every cry of every man". Blake considers the onlooker's emotions and the actual streets and dark side to the city compared to Wordsworth who focuses on the beauty and natural side to London. Blake blames all of the poverty and damage in London on the authorities and the "black'ning church," he thinks it's because of their lack of awareness and care to London's citizens that it has got this way. ...read more.

Middle

Instead of concentrating on the people and their emotions like Blake, Wordsworth focuses on it as though he was describing a beautiful, natural area of countryside. Wordsworth talks about how the "Earth has not anything to show more fair", he is describing that London can't show anything more attractive than what he sees from Westminster Bridge. He then says how it is "a sight so touching in its majesty," London is so royal and perfect. Wordsworth refers to the city wearing "a garment" as though it is hiding the gloomy, sinister London underneath. From Westminster Bridge he can see the fields and countryside, he doesn't get to see the busy roads, streets and big buildings beyond. In contrast, Blake sees the hideous, bleak part of the city and the gloomy, depressing emotions the people that pass by him are feeling. He expresses his feelings of sadness and frustration, he describes "chartered" streets and Thames, which emphasises how everything has been demoralized and taken over. ...read more.

Conclusion

Wordsworth uses phrases such as "bright and glistening in the smokeless air" and "the beauty of the morning; silent, bare" to set a scene of calm, glistening beauty. In comparison Blake uses words like "streets" twice in context with "midnight" and "chartered". His repetition of the word "streets" is to suggest that there are streets upon streets creating a dull similarity to everything, his repetition on "chartered" strengthens his view of oddness in London. Both writers improve their scenery by indicating at colours to set a more vivid picture "blood", "midnight", "blackening," these are all words used by Blake, ideas of the colours red and black which create a gloomy surrounding. In conclusion I think that both poems are very well-written and powerful, although their views of London are very different they both work well. Blake sees the gloomy, dark side to the city and people's emotions, whereas Wordsworth's view is that it is beautiful and natural-he sees fields and beauty. The different views they have could be because of their backgrounds and where they grew up as Wordsworth grew up in the North England countryside and Blake was born and bred in the middle of London itself. ...read more.

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