How does Tennyson tell the story of Tithonus

Good Essays
Topics: Poetry, Immortality
How does Tennyson tell the story of ‘Tithonus’? (A02)

Tennyson tells the reminiscence of immortal lover ‘Tithonus’ in an elegiac fashion. The poem depicts the suffering of the immortal Tithonus who unfortunately despite having been granted immortal life was not blessed with immortal youth with it. As such, Tithonus is doomed to age and as he withers and wrinkles away, he is left to endure alone since his lover, the immortal goddess Aurora is tasked with carrying the rising sun at dawn. Tennyson’s narrative methods are effective at conveying Tithonus’s confused and regretful state of mind. Tennyson’s linguistic devices project the powerful emotions felt by Tithonus and his lingering memories of his youth adds a sense of nostalgia to Tithonus’s mindset. The use of a dramatic monologue structure is effective in giving a true insight into Tithonus’s thoughts. Tennyson’s employment of a dramatic monologue form is effective in explaining Tithonus’s obsession with death. The poetic voice is Tithonus’s confusion coming to the fore: “ay me! ay me!... The woods decay, the woods decay” the unexplained repetition of certain words suggests Tithonus’s mindset to be confused and befuddled; his immortality has rendered his mind trapped at times, trying to keep up with time at the same rate as his body does. The dramatic monologue form is essential in successfully conveying how time and age has wreaked havoc on Tithonus’s sanity. ‘Tithonus’ is a poem written in unrhymed iambic pentameter; this suggests the dramatic monologue to be a spontaneous monologue or else Tithonus’s mind has aged to such an extent that it has lost coherency. However, the first ten lines are in iambic pentameter. This suggests that in the first verse at least, Tithonus is steeling himself to deliver a message to the reader or to Aurora before lapsing into a sad reminiscence. Tennyson tries to convey the feelings of detachment Tithonus feels from his current self and his past human state. He

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    Tennyson- Tithonus

    • 944 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Write about the ways Tennyson tells the story in ‘Tithonus’ Tennyson tells the story of Tithonus with very mixed emotions. One minute he is in the depths of despair, and next confessing his desire for his lover. In Tithonus, a variety of techniques are used to show the narrator’s thoughts and feelings. One of the techniques involved is repetition. ‘Ay me! ay me!’ This repetition hints at how strong his despair is, slowly decaying but not dying as an immortal. The exclamation marks show that…

    • 944 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    HOW DOES TENNYSON TELL THE STORY IN ‘ULYSSES’? ‘Ulysses’ is written in the form of a dramatic monologue. This form strongly involves the reader with no sense of distancing. Instead, the reader feels as if they are one of his “mariners” in the story who have “toil’d, and wrought, and thought” with him. The poem opens with the voice of Ulysses perturbed by his “dull” life. The choice of the apathetic word, “idle” in the opening line, immediately creates a sense of his tedious role in which nothing…

    • 150 Words
    • 1 Page
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    What methods does Tennyson use to tell the story in Godiva? Tennyson begins with a short prologue in first person narrative which separates itself from the rest of the poem. ‘I waited for a train at Coventry.’ It’s set to be in Tennyson’s own voice and is suggesting to the reader that he’s getting his inspiration there and then; it adds a personal touch to the poem. Tennyson’s set it to suggest and give a medieval feel to the story because it’s in the past. Tennyson’s represented himself to hang…

    • 296 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Death takes man into a world from where he cannot return but immortality has brought Tithonus far away from the world of men, too far to retrace his steps .Tithonus, written by Alfred Tennyson is based on Greek mythology, Tithonus fell in love with Eos, goddess of the dawn, and asked her for immortality. Unfortunately for Tithonus he did not ask for eternal youth, only eternal life. He, therefore, grows old but never dies while Eos not only never dies but also never grows old. What makes Tithonus's…

    • 942 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    How does Tennyson tell the story of 'Godiva'? In the poem 'Godiva' Alfred Lord Tennyson employs another famous mythological legend and transforms it into a story of his own. it is a narrative poem written from the perspective of an omniscient narrator whereby Tennyson has introduced political and economical aspects of Victorian society, the time in which the poem was written. The poem is written in verse paragraphs…

    • 801 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    History September 25, 2012 Term Paper Tithonus Ever wonder what it would be like to have three wishes? I remember being a little girl and always believing in fairy tales and all of the magic that the stories illustrate. One wish that I would always dream to wish for was immortal life, as I’m sure most people off hand would. However, sometimes not all wishes are built up to be all that they seem. In Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s “Tithonus”, the Ancient Greek, lover of Eos was given the so-called…

    • 1440 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    What Techniques Does Tennyson Use To Tell The Story Of Mariana? Tennyson uses place and setting, time, characterisation, imagery and form to tell the story in his poem Mariana, based on the character of Mariana from Shakespeare’s play Measure for Measure. The poem is about the character Mariana, who after losing her dowry in a shipwreck, her lover Angelo leaves her. In the poem, we see Mariana slowly coming to terms with the fact that Angelo will never be coming back to her. Tennyson uses place and…

    • 841 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Godiva is poem written by Alfred Tennyson about a well known myth regarding a woman named Godiva. The Earl who ruled Coventry wanted the people to pay more tax which they could not afford. Godiva asked him to lower the tax, and the Earl told her he would repeal the tax if she rode through the town naked. Godiva therefore agreed to this, and the townspeople stayed inside and shut all the doors and windows so no one would see Godiva, allowing her to keep her dignity. Godiva rode through the town naked…

    • 647 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    How does Browning tell the story in “The Laboratory”? Robert Browning’s poem “The Laboratory” is set in France before the French Revolution. The dramatic monologue is about the narrator herself and her plotting of revenge against her previous lover and his current mistress and it tells the reader how she plans on doing so. She believes her actions in the story are justified and reasonable. In the poem, the story’s tone is established with the setting, which also helps create vivid imagery for…

    • 892 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    On what I’ve heard it sounds like Tennyson wants to hurt Brewster for something that can help him later in life like that opportunity to make a difference in his life and help brewster with what he could do for brewster. If brewster kept his visuals away from Tennyson he would probably still do it and tennyson wouldn’t have even known that brewster was doing it in the first place. Tennyson needs to try and slow down in the mental mind of his cause if you go to fast for thinking you can find mistakes…

    • 104 Words
    • 1 Page
    Satisfactory Essays