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GCSE: Robert Browning

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  1. My Last Duchess.

    She can be controlled when not alive and on the wall! She was a possession to him as a person, and is a possession to him now, that she is a picture. She smiled to everyone she was "too easily impressed" and she "liked whate'er she looked on, and her looks went everywhere". This then got the duke angry and extremely envois, the fact that "the bough of cherries some officious fool broke in the orchard for her" would "draw from her alike the approving speech, or blush" as much as "she ranks my gift of a nine-hundred-years-old-name".

    • Word count: 475
  2. Porphyria's Lover by Robert Browning - an Analysis and exploration of the poem and the issues it raises.

    Porphyria's Lover is natural in its language; it does not display the colloquialisms or dialectical markers of some of some poems. Moreover, while the cadence of the poem mimics natural speech, it actually takes the form of highly patterned verse, rhyming ABABB. The intensity and asymmetry of the pattern suggests the madness concealed within the speaker's reasoned self-presentation. This poem is a dramatic monologue--a fictional speech presented as the musings of a speaker who is separate from the poet. Browning wrote many other dramatic monologues, many famous, this one captures a moment after a main event or action.

    • Word count: 4212
  3. Compare and contrast the two Poems By Robert Browning - 'Porphyria's Lover' and 'My Last Duchess'

    When Fra Pandolf was painting her portrait he offered many complements about the duchess and the duke was jealous about this because he thought that he owned the duchess, and could do whatever he wanted with her so to stop any more comments of this nature. I believe the duchess to have been a lively person who easily got along with anyone and befriended anyone but the duke doesn't like the duchess taking to any other male so he ordered the murder because he wanted her all to himself but the duchess being a lively person didn't stop talking to people so he was envious of them.

    • Word count: 649
  4. How does Robert Browning convey the feelings of the narrator for the women in each of the two poems 'Porphyria's Lover' and 'My Last Duchess'?

    They set the chilling atmosphere brilliantly for the reader. Although the dialect is in some parts hard to grasp, the poem has a remarkable way of getting across the cold and angry atmosphere of the story line. "Porphyria's Lover," the reader is led on a path through the mind of an unnamed narrator. A speaker who is not the author sets a dark and stormy stage. The man speaks to a silent audience about his murderous yet almost justifiable actions.

    • Word count: 1640
  5. ‘Tis Strange To Me’ by Hartley Coleridge, and ‘Home Thoughts from Abroad’ by Robert Browning.

    He travelled to Italy in 1838, at the age of 26, and lived for many years. Coleridge writes about living in a city in a foreign country, exactly which city we are not told, but this longing to return home is intensely expressed in his sonnet. The three poems we studied all have one similarity - that each poet feels as if they did not appreciate their homeland in their youth. Robert Browning compares his life in England to the song of the thrush (Line 14 - 15.) He describes that the thrush has the ability to 'sing the song twice over,' in other words the thrush has the chance to repeat his first song, whereas Browning does not have a second chance in life to relive his youth in England.

    • Word count: 1903
  6. Compare several of the poems in `Best Words’ that give different views of love

    The Duke thinks that love equals possession or wealth, `Which Claus of Innsbruck cast in bronze for me! ' He wants more statues which means more money for him. Porphyria's Lover is abut a maniac who is in love with a relatively attractive woman and wants to capture the moment when she says `Happy and Proud; at last I knew Porphyria worshipped me; ' so he strangles her with her own hair when she had that thought of love in her head `All her hair in one long yellow string I wound three times her little throat around, and strangled her.

    • Word count: 1418
  7. Comparison of ‘My Last Duchess’ with ‘Porphyria’s Lover’, by Robert Browning.

    The two speakers that Browning uses, the Duke, and Porphyria's lover, are distinctly different. Browning accentuates this difference with the settings of the poems. The lover lives in a seemingly small cottage, with a 'cheerless grate'. The setting is not described extensively, apart from the weather. Browning describes the weather outside the cottage first: 'The rain set in early tonight, The sullen wind was soon awake, It tore the elm-tops down for spite, And did its worst to vex the lake.' He uses pathetic fallacy to indicate to us the lover's mood. The use of human, angry adjectives such as 'sullen' and a verb 'to vex' means that the lover is in a tempestuous mood, even before Porphyria arrives.

    • Word count: 1321
  8. “Occasionally an anti-climax can be suprisingly effective”[Andrew Crocker-Harris] How successful is the ending of Rattigan’s The Browning Version.

    Also Millie's incessant mentioning of her inheritance and her uncle Sir William Bartop is to show that she has money and it is almost a boast. This is her fa´┐Żade to improve her social standing and she uses it to imply that she is better off than your average schoolmaster's wife. This is evident when the Head says 'Your wife's remarks had lead me to imagine something a little more - extensive'. At this time divorce was frowned upon greatly.

    • Word count: 1731
  9. Compare and contrast ‘Human Interest’ and ‘Porphyria’s Lover’.

    Because the murderers loved their victims it makes the motives for the killings, which I will examine later, all the more interesting and the murders themselves harder to comprehend. Another similarity that I have noticed is that both murderers are mentally weak - they both murder their partners because they are jealous that they [the victims] may end up marrying someone else. Succumbing to jealousy in this way also suggests that they are in some way insecure, and need to remove the cause of the problem, that is their partners, to feel secure again.

    • Word count: 2245
  10. Porphyria’s lover

    He writes life into the weather. The man the poem is listening 'with heart fit to break'. This could be because he knows that the weather might prevent his Porphyria from coming to him. As Porphyria enters the cottage she 'shuts the cold out', the very presence of Porphyria in the cottage generally brightens the atmosphere and helps the man forget the storm outside.

    • Word count: 330
  11. Porphyria's Lover

    Give us the sense that this woman holds some power over her lover. She seems to take care of him. This sets up a reason why the speaker is obsessed with Porphyria. Dependence is a common feeling associated with love as many people find that they need them to fill holes inside of them. Porphyria is obviously of a higher rank in society by her use of the words "pride and vanity." This "rank" gives her obvious power. Porphyria's power is stopped when she tells him why she came: "Murmuring how she loved me-she Too weak, for all her heart's endeavour To set it's struggling passion free From pride, and vainer ties dissever, And give herself to me forever."

    • Word count: 945
  12. Browning gives us insights into people at crucial points in their lives. Compare the ways in which the poems use the dramatic monologue form as well as language to bring out the feelings and situation of the characters in the poems.

    She even helps him make the poison, 'Grind away moisten and mash up thy paste...' We can see by the language of the poem, that the women wants the man to suffer. 'He is sure to remember her dying face!' From this we can tell that the women is trying to make the women look ugly, so that he may picture that face forever. 'Let death be felt and the proof remain...' It is obvious from some quotes that she is very eager to kill, 'Quick-is it finished?' When she sees the finished poison she says, 'The colour's too grim!'

    • Word count: 1262
  13. Compare and Contrast Poetry Education for Leisure by Carol Ann Duffy (written 1986) and Porphyria’s Lover by Robert Browning (written 1832)

    In the places where the persona is acknowledging his brilliance, the tone would be very cocky and arrogant. He pictures himself as a talented person who society has failed, and feels that we should pity him for being the ignored frustrated individual that he is. In "Porphyria's Lover", the man sounds very much like a child. He sounds like a murderer; the way in which he is very gentle and childlike is frightening to me. In a way he also sounds selfless, killing Porphyria because it was her wish for them to be together. But this persona is also selfish in that he killed Porphyria because he wanted her to love only him.

    • Word count: 1491
  14. Compare the three dramatic monologues you have studied and comment on the way in which the characters reveal their true nature through what they say.

    In "My Last Duchess" the speaker again is a male. The speaker is the Duke; the poem is in his picture gallery of which he is very proud. Compared to the man in "Porphyria's Lover" the Duke has manners, "Will't please you rise?". The Duke seems very arrogant, he appears to be well educated, have a good vocabulary and have a very good sentence structure. In "The Cleaner" the speaker is a woman, she appears to have a nice personality and at the same time she seems to spy an awful lot, which does not make her a nice person.

    • Word count: 1472
  15. Porphyria’s lover and My last duchess by Robert Browning

    Even his wife was no exception. The duke considers himself above the law and at his level there is only his law. The duke also speaks in rhyming caplets as well as dramatic monologue. In Porphyria's lover we are looking at a man who has wild emotions and feelings towards Porphyria. He talks about his feelings just before he kills her. He says how much he loves her and wants her to be only his forever. He doesn't want to allow destiny to take her somewhere else in life.

    • Word count: 648
  16. What merit can you find in Browning’s two poems?

    'She thanked men, -good! But thanked somehow - I know not how - as if she ranked my gift of a nine-hundred-years-old name with anybody's gift.' He is very egoistic and it is rather ironic that Browning used heroic couplets for the poem! Heroic couplets are when the rhyming couplets are in iambic pentameter. This is because iambic pentameter is about the pace in which we speak, and the poem is written as in a monologue in which he is talking to somebody and showing him his picture of his late wife in his art gallery.

    • Word count: 1555
  17. ‘In Memoriam’ and ‘Men and Women’ are poems without unity. Discuss.

    The most obvious point to be made is that neither of the collection of poems themselves superficially appear to make up a coherent whole. The one hundred and thirty three different sections of Tennyson's 'In Memoriam' were written separately, certainly initially without the idea of a long elegy in mind, but it is unclear at which point he began to write specifically for the piece 'I did not write them with any view of weaving them into a whole, or for publication, until I found that I had written so many.'4.

    • Word count: 2291
  18. How do Brownings poems - Porphyria's Lover and My Last Duchess - tell us about the position of women in previous centuries? Was this a reflection of Browning's personal view?

    Browning is writing from the Dukes viewpoint and we have to remember that not only was the Duke three/four hundred years prior Brownings time, he would have also been brought up in a family where it was socially acceptable to discard wives as possessions and even to have had them killed if they did not satisfy their wants. This, in itself, is an injustice towards women, making it seem as though they are there merely for men's sake only and are second class citizens - ranking far from males.

    • Word count: 690
  19. Comparing Browning's "Porphyrias Lover" and "My Last Duchess".

    The lover's act of violence thus casts it shadow on all those other less-dramatic acts of domination and appropriation that manage to pass unnoticed under the cover of rational male behavior. The themes in both poems are clear, in my last duchess the subject and main attraction is the painting and its beauty, although in porphyria?s lover the subject is either porphyria as her name is the one mentioned but the title of the poem provides and expresses a rather contrary view.

    • Word count: 826
  20. 'My Last Duchess' is a love poem, where it describes about 2 people marrying each other for business or political reasons.

    He then starts telling the emissary about him seeing the painting of the duchess as she was alive and then he starts giving the painting some life 'Looking as if she were alive' and 'and there she stands'. He also tells the emissary about the artist who painted the painting, Fra Pandolf. He also starts to brag about his painting and starts to say that no stranger can look and see the painting but him. He is also referring the emissary as a stranger however he is showing him the painting just to impress him and the delegation.

    • Word count: 676
  21. Analyse "Porphyria's lover" by Robert Browning

    The narrator of this great piece is a complex multi layered character who shows us the problems and conflicts within his mind. Browning unfolds the secrets of the narrator very subtlety. The murder is described with a passive and apathetic voice which makes this poem seem so unreal and abstract. The author touches the most delicate and dark sides of our mind and shows us what would happen if the was no conscious present or if it was understood differently.

    • Word count: 701
  22. The comparison of 'My Last Duchess' and 'The Laboratory'

    two poems the influence of a male perspective is vividly shown which is to be expected as the author of the monologue is Sir Robert Browning. Two types of women are illustrated in the poems, in Browning?s monologue of ?My Last Duchess? it seems that the duke enjoys protecting the girl and wrapping her around cotton wool which may explain his jealously when his bride received other gifts. However In ?The Laboratory? the angry wife seems to be deranged as a result of being ignored from her husband.

    • Word count: 1550

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