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'London' and 'Composed upon Westminster Bridge'

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Introduction

Compare and Contrast 'London' by William Blake 'Composed upon Westminster Bridge, September 3rd 1802 by William Wordsworth' This essay will explore the similarities and differences between Westminster Bridge and London. Although both poems are under the category The Romantics, and both have the same location i.e. London. However the differences are that both poems are referring to London, but have a variety of different emotions. William Wordsworth was born on 17th April, 1770 and died on the 23rd april1850. He was a British poet and created with ushering in the English romantics' movement with the production lyrical Ballards (1798) collaboration with Samiel Taylor Coleridge. He is a poet who wrote steadily from his earliest high school days at Hawkshead. Wordsworth is better known to poetry, written in response to the natural world. William Blake was born on 28th November 1757 and died 12th August 1827. He was known as a political anti-establishment poet of his day. He was a religious person, Blake was known as a 'engraver' in his days, not as a poet or artist. He died almost penniless. The content of the poem London, gives a very negative point of view on the city London, it tells us about how miserable, dull and depressing the streets of London were, while he was walking through them. 'I wander thro each charter'd street'. This tells us about how controlled the streets were and that the disapproving of the streets and rivers in London, no longer belong to the people but are in the hands of powerful forces of business and commence. ...read more.

Middle

Another example would be the 'chimney sweepers' in old London would have most likely been children which again gives a different perspective and image to the 'chimney sweepers cry'. Also the image effect shown in Westminster Bridge gives us a happy view of London; this shows us that it is a better image compared to London. We can tell that there is a very happy atmosphere and everyone gets along with each other, it shows us how glamorous London looks. 'Earth has not anything to show more fair'. This tells that everything on earth is fair, there is no oppression going on and they all get along very well. Again another image in Westminster is 'the very houses seem asleep', this means that the way Wordsworth puts it, the London that he is talking about is peaceful, silent all around and just everyone acting very calm. In the London poem there are no similes but a lot of metaphors, such as 'in every cry of every man, in every infant's cry of fear'. This example of a metaphor makes the London poem better and more effective; Blake puts a lot of metaphors in here because his poem is all about London a being sad and gloomy poem, and by putting metaphors in it will make it more clear for people to see what Blake was feeling and what he wanted people to know. ...read more.

Conclusion

While Wordsworth is describing what he sees, he also says 'valley, rock or hill' to beatify London even more. William Blake's poem is depressing in tone; it's bleak and negative about London as a whole, but in Wordsworth's poem there is more passion about the city and its surroundings. These poems are quite the opposite to each other, the only very similarity it has is that it has the same location. In London it says that the Thames is a restricted river 'the charter'd Thames does flow', but in Westminster it says that the river is free 'the river glideth at his own sweet will'. Which means Blake sees the river as restricted and Wordsworth believes that the river is free. This shows that there view are different towards London and its surroundings. In conclusion I think both poems are written in different styles and are written from different points of views, which gives contrasting poems. Blake's view is that he dislikes the state and church for making society the way it is, whereas Wordsworth is quite happy with what he sees and believes and that London is always like that. William Blake uses words such as 'black ning', whereas Wordsworth uses words such as 'bright'. Blake has lived there and experienced it, but Wordsworth has just visited London, so maybe Blake knows and understands London more. Wordsworth concludes what he believes in the last line, which is the 'mighty heart' of London is lying still, meaning that it is carm and peaceful. ...read more.

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