Lady of Shalott Condradictions Analysis

Good Essays
The Lady of Shallot is a story written by Alfred Tennyson and published in 1842. This poem is superb because of it’s elusiveness and sense of mystery. However, because of these traits, it is very diffucult to analyze. Although presented with these difficulties, The Lady of Shallot has many purposely contradictory images that are shown throughout the poem. One notable example of a contradictory image would be when the Lady of Shalott is weaving her tapestry and looking at Camelot through her mirror. Upon the reflection she sees “A funeral, with plumes and lights/ or when the moon was overhead, came two young lovers lately wed.” (67-70) Tennyson makes us note that the Lady of Shalott either sees a wedding or a funeral; This presents the viewer with a foreshadowing of two contradictory states. It impacts the viewers by showing these two situations are interchangeable and, further on into the poem, this is proven correct when The Lady of Shalott falls in love with Sir Lancelot and in doing so, begets the curse upon her. Another example would be the presentation of the weather and it’s changes through the poem. When the viewer is introduced to Lancelot, he is displayed and described with vibrant, flashing colors. He is a “red-cross knight”(78); his shield “sparkled on the yellow field”(80); he wears a “silver bugle”(88); he passes through “blue unclouded weather”(91) and the “purple night,”(96) and he has “coal-black curls.”(103) He is also described in a “gemmy bridle”(82) and other accessories, which sparkle in the sunlight. In contrast, once the Lady chooses to look at him without the use of the mirror, the curse is set upon her and everything turns pale and dark. The brilliance of the sky and the sunlight are replaced by a “low sky raining,” The moment the Lady looks upon lancelot, she is stricken by her curse and, therefore, death. At the end of the poem, her blood froze and her eyes turned dark. Finally, the contradiction between her decision to remain

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    Lady of Shalott

    • 1194 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Lady of shalott Symbolism is an important aspect of the Lady of Shalott. Some important symbols are the tapestry, the mirror, and the curse. The tapestry is the world that the Lady of Shalott exists in. It is her reality. She looks through the mirrors distorted view and weaves what she sees. It is her experience and memory. But, the Lady of Shalott does not se true reality but a distorted view. The mirror represents the Lady of Shalott's naiveté and innocence It is the rose-colored glass…

    • 1194 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Tennyson's poem "The Lady of Shalott" relates the story of a woman cursed to remain inside a tower on Shalott, an island situated in the river which flows to Camelot. No one knows of her existence, as her curse forbids her to leave the tower, forever bound to weave a tapestry illustrating the wonders of the outside world by the means of what she can only see through the reflections of a large magic mirror. As the poem progresses, so does the lady's tiredness of her lonely existence in her tower,…

    • 2123 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Lady Of Shalott

    • 947 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Synopsis The first four stanzas describe a pastoral setting. The Lady of Shalott lives in an island castle in a river which flows to Camelot, but little is known about her by the local farmers. And by the moon the reaper weary, Piling sheaves in uplands airy, Listening, whispers, " 'Tis the fairy Lady of Shalott." Stanzas five to eight describe the lady's life. She suffers from a mysterious curse, and must continually weave images on her loom without ever looking directly out at the world…

    • 947 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    The Lady of Shalott

    • 7022 Words
    • 29 Pages

    A Blessing and a Curse: The Poetics of Privacy in Tennyson's "The Lady of Shalott" Author(s): Joseph Chadwick Reviewed work(s): Source: Victorian Poetry, Vol. 24, No. 1 (Spring, 1986), pp. 13-30 Published by: West Virginia University Press Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40002181 . Accessed: 22/01/2012 02:08 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at . http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp JSTOR is a not-for-profit…

    • 7022 Words
    • 29 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    The Lady Of Shalott

    • 778 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Fools Love In this narrative poem The Lady of Shalott imprudently makes decisions that will later cost her, her life. Four gray towers and four gray walls embower the Lady of Shalott, who cannot look down on Camelot or a curse is put upon her. In her mirror she gazes at a striking red-cross knight and foolishly believes to have fallen in love. This knight had no idea of her existence and he too was love crazed for another woman. The Lady of Shalott was content dwelling within the castle walls…

    • 778 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Lady of Shalott

    • 367 Words
    • 2 Pages

    others who view fall as a short time before a dreary winter, fall takes on a less colorful face. Alfred Lord Tennyson uses fall metaphorically throughout "The Lady of Shalott" to illustrate how the Lady of Shalott's life (or lack thereof) progresses. Looking at fall at the macro level reveals that fall is a time of change. Like fall the Lady of Shalott's life saw very little change. Until there was a very sudden and abrupt sequence of events that led to the death (or winter) of her life. In addition…

    • 367 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    How does Tennyson create mood and atmosphere in ‘The Lady of Shalott’? The atmosphere created in ‘The Lady of Shalott’ is quite consistently serene whilst the poem varies in sorrowful or grieving sentiment throughout. Tennyson uses many different techniques, including a wide variety of imagery, in shaping the reader’s mood in order to manipulate the reader’s view of the poem. During part one the writer sets the scene for the story by describing the island and its environment; he uses imagery and…

    • 4443 Words
    • 18 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    traceable to Tennyson's work".[2]Tennyson's biographer Leonée Ormonde finds the Arthurian material is "Introduced as a valid setting for the study of the artist and the dangers of personal isolation". Modern critics[citation needed] consider "The Lady of Shalott" to be representative of the dilemma that faces artists, writers, andmusicians: to create work about and celebrate the world, or to enjoy the world by simply living in it. Feminist critics[citation needed] see the poem as concerned with issues…

    • 3170 Words
    • 13 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Hanes British Literature II 12. May 2009 The Lady of Shalott Critique Jane Wright gives a compelling and insightful critique of Alfred Lord Tennyson 's poem The Lady of Shalott. The poem tells the story of a lady isolated in a tower weaving tapestry of what she sees reflected in a mirror. The real story is that of the classic conflict and relationship between art and reality. In her article titled “A reflection on fiction and art in 'The Lady of Shalott '” she explores the true meaning of the tapestry…

    • 736 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Under the surface of “The Lady of Shalott” “The Lady of Shalott”, by Alfred Tennyson, is a Victorian ballad based on an early renaissance Italian story "Quì conta come la Damigella di Scalot morì per amore di Lancialotto de Lac." While it is on the surface a simple narrative of an Arthurian story, it is impossible not to wonder if Tennyson intended to get something more across. One of the possible interpretations of “The Lady of Shalott” is as a commentary on the relationship between artists…

    • 557 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays