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roert browning

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Discuss the Themes of Love and Madness in Robert Browning's Poetry I will discuss the themes of love and madness in Robert Browning's poems called "My Last Duchess" and "Porphyry's Lover." "My last Duchess" is set in the renaissance, period in Ferrara, northern Italy, whereas "Porphyry's Lover" is set in the Victorian times. Two different age gaps The madness and love in both poems is shown in many ways such as the obsession for control. Control is shown in both poems, the duke in "My Last Duchess" has a passion for control over his wife, "Too easily impressed; she liked what ever, she looked on, and her looks went everywhere." This shows that he had no control over her, as she looked everywhere and she was too easily impressed by the things she saw. The madness for control in "Porphyry's lover" is in a different context as we have the idea that the speaker is ill as he is described as "one so pale." ...read more.


In Porphyry's lover the Caesura is used to make the reader seem the man is calm. "Happy and proud; at last I knew that Porphyry worshipped me". Madness and love is also shown in the poetic devices such as metaphors, "that's my last Duchess painted on the wall, looking as she is alive." Implies that she could be painted to the point of looking alive. In "Porphyry's Lover" she metaphorically is described, "she glided in Porphyries," this would suggest that she peacefully came into the cottage. It shows how the lover sought to see her as perfect he also describes her as "pure." Imagery is a prominent part in both poems, "Sir Twas not her husband's presences that called that spot of joy on her cheek," this describes what happened when the Duchess saw other men. It is a motive for the Duke's jealousy. The male speakers both begin as seemingly normal people, "I listened with a heart fit to break" (Porphyry's Lover) ...read more.


and this drives the lovers to murderous action. As the madness for love grows, the men in the poems went in murdering their lovers to get what they want, "I gave commands, and then all smiles stopped together ... half-flush that dies along her throat." This suggests that the Duke paid someone to strangle her. The speaker in "Porphyry's Lover" is more open about the murder as he makes it sound easier to kill Porphyry, "In one long string, I wound it three times around her little neck, and strangled her." This suggests that there was no struggle but we can not be sure that it is true as we only have one side of the story. The simplicity with which he supposedly murders Porphyry reflects his distraught state of mind. In conclusion, I fell that the link between the themes are shown by the men in both poems as they start of as seemingly normal people but quickly progress to madmen driven by love for their lovers. This is because they have had unfulfilled love which leads to obsession which leads to action. ...read more.

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