R.S Thomas and William Wordsworth. Compare and Contrast the works of two poets who write on the theme of people and the landscape.

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Pritesh Vithlani

Compare and Contrast the works of two poets who write on the theme of people and the landscape

        Two poets who wrote about similar subjects were R.S Thomas and William Wordsworth. Their poems were often based on scenic areas and human beings. The difference between the two poets was they had an entirely different view of the certain topics. This enabled them to have different styles of writing.

        R.S Thomas was a welsh vicar born in Cardiff in 1913. He studied theology at the University College of north Wales. He then followed on to study at St. Michaels College, llandaff. After ordination in the church of Wales in 1827, he worked in rural parishes. Most of his work was set in Wales.

        William Wordsworth was educated at St. John’s College, Cambridge University. He had a love of nature as a youth. He often visited places known for their scenic beauty. He was one of the first romantic British poets.


R.S Thomas showed life in a sorrowful manner. He hardly used admirable language to explain life. He preferred using realistic poetry to show the meaning of life. His writing reflects his child hood. This relates to the imagery he gained from the farmers on the farm. His work was also emphasised based on the harsh life in Wales.  Some think he fails to recognise the good in things. He wrote realistically rather than passionately. Thomas wrote in the 20th century.  

Wordsworth’s works portrays some kind of fantasy world.  He wrote during the 1800 and 1900’s. He is the opposite of Thomas because he only sees the good in things. His work was influenced by the beautiful scenes he had excursions to as a child. A Romantic poet wrote poems which are calm and meaningful. For example, he wrote a poem called ‘On Westminster Bridge.’

This poem is about Wordsworth who is standing on the bridge and he describes what he can see. Not only the buildings but as well as nature. He also shares his emotion about the picturesque scenery.

The first line shows that according to him, there is nothing better than this view anywhere in the world. We know this is not true by just looking at a few places around the world. The next two lines are saying that if anyone could walk by and not see ‘a sight so touching’ then there would be something dull about them. The next stanza is explaining that the city is wearing a beautiful piece of clothing. ‘The city now doth, like a garment, wear The beauty of the morning;’

Wordsworth describes what he sees. He is very blunt and short. ‘Ships. Towers. Theatres.’  During this time, (before the invention of the motor car) there was no pollution. ‘ All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.’ In the rest of the poem he shows how calm and peaceful it is during dawn.

He is bemused by the beauty of the morning. The main theme is the view off Westminster Bridge and the wanders of it. The poet expresses his romantic use of language by words used such as ‘majesty’ and ‘splendour’. He feels the overwhelming image is one of a kind. ‘Earth has not anything to show more fair:’

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The predominant emotion is of uttermost delight. He expresses his appreciation of the peacefulness of the morning nature.

The atmosphere the poem conveys is pleasant and of a soothing nature. This due to the fact that he’s a romantic poet.

In this poem, there is a metre and this creates the slow-type movement that prevails throughout the poem. Rhyme is also deployed. The rhyme scheme determines the sonnet style of writing. The first rhyme scheme is used to describe what he sees and the second about what he feels. The idea of a sonnet is to split a ...

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