Comparison of My Last Duchess and the Laboratory

Topics: Robert Browning, Mortar and pestle, Love Pages: 2 (813 words) Published: November 9, 2012
‘The laboratory, the content of the play, from my point of view is about a woman whose partner has left her for another woman. The poet has planned to kill the other woman as she is jealous of her and wants revenge from her ex. We can tell she is jealous of this other woman as she says she’s not little, no minion like me!’ this shows she is jealous of the woman as she thinks she is of higher status, the words ‘she’s not little’ shows this. She thinks the other woman is better than she is. We also know she wants to get revenge from her ex as she says ‘he is sure to remember her dying face!’ here we know she wants revenge as she wants her ex to see the love of his life die as well as suffer, by doing this she will punish both of them. ‘My last duchess, the poem is set during the 19th century. The speaker who is the Duke of Ferrara is giving the tour of his prospective second wife a tour of the artworks in his home. He draws a curtain to reveal a painting of a woman, explaining that it is a portrait of his late wife; he invites his guest to sit and look at the painting. As they look at the portrait of the Duchess, the Duke describes her happy, cheerful and flirtatious nature, which had displeased him. He says, "She had a heart or how shall I say? Too soon made glad" He goes on to say that his complaint of her was that not only her husband's presence was that made her happy. Eventually, "I gave commands; then all smiles stopped together." He now keeps her painting hidden behind a curtain that only he is allowed to draw back, meaning that now she only smiles for him The two Robert Browning poems I have chosen are 'The Laboratory' and 'My last Duchess'. My initial reaction on reading the laboratory was one of horror and fascination as it tells a tale of a woman scorned. I found it horrifying that a human being could plan in such a cold and calculating way, but I also found this fascinating. My feelings on reading My Last Duchess was pity for the Duke who was...
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