What men or gods are these? Ode on a Grecian Urn - Further Notes Summary In the first stanza, the speaker stands before an ancient Grecian urn and addresses it. Is the urn rejected at the end? Illustrated on the urn is some kind of story that might involve gods, men, or both. First, its apparent simplicity belies its latent symbolic meaning. You have awakened the sleeping feeling in the urn as well as in my sleeping emotion. One of the first superficial qualities that the reader notices in this phrase is the economy of language that characterizes this part of the line. The second thought is the truth-beauty equation.
As it progresses, it loses its perfection. The picture on the urn is Edenic. Death is very much shunned by modern society and we do not think of it all that much. Keats describes the beautiful urn by sharing his detailed observations, noting its decorations and conveying its scenes to the reader. Although it is suggested metaphorically earlier in the poem, this is the first instance in which the speaker acknowledges human death. He is asking why there was such a wild chase and struggle to escape, and what was it with the pipes that seem to be playing, and why there was such excitement.
The first stanza begins: Thou still unravish'd bride of quietness, Thou foster-child of Silence and slow Time He's talking to the urn in this opening. He wonders about the figures on the side of the urn and asks what legend they depict and from where they come. They're silent and they're not moving forward in time - that's the 'foster-child of Silence and slow Time' - they kind of evoke this stillness or frozenness of the images on the urn. The Romantics had rejected the idea that religious authority, political leaders, science, any of those things could really answer the big questions about the universe. Does Keats, in this ode, follow the pattern of the Keats, Lyric Poems, pp.
He questions if it was set in the lush, green ancient cities of maybe Tempe or Arcady. In stanza two, John Keats introduces the scene of two young lovers on the urn to show idealized love. However she lost a great part of her money to a crook. People have come from a nearby town to watch. He is preoccupied with its depiction of pictures frozen in time.
But they may look sweet and attractive. Talking to a thing is a thing that poets do in odes. Since his death, his work has been largely debated upon and analyzed, and although delayed, he is now praised and respected as one of the greatest English poets of all time, and his work is largely anthologized. They're kind of saying 'this urn is beautiful, so are the people on it. Indeed, the final wisdom of the urn has been a source of ongoing debate among poets, readers, and scholars for the last two centuries. It might not seem like it on the surface, but this is a sexy poem. The Fifth Stanza Fifth stanza - we're almost done.
It is as though he wishes to partake in these scenes himself. To what green alter, O mysterious priest, Lead'st thou that heifer lowing at the skies, And all her silken flanks with garlands drest? John Keats is one of the most celebrated English romantic poets. During the second verse, the reader is introduced to another image on the Grecian urn. The overall sense, at least until the concluding stanza, suggests a feeling of pleasure, bliss, and eternity, rather than of death. No real passion is going on; the scenes on the urn are frozen.
But in any case, facing the object itself, the poet is not talking about its visual value — of its form or its colors — but the fact that it transcends time and is capable of seeing, through language, what an object does not show at first sight and what only a poet can see in a funerary urn. Under the trees a lover is serenading his beloved. At this interpretive level, the poem yields up at least one alternate meaning. His observations of the urn have provoked considerations about the nature of truth, beauty, and the function of art, all of which were the primary concerns of the. Each of these is ten lines.
It follows the iambic pentameter, with ten lines in each stanza. Other figures, or possibly the male figures, are playing musical instruments. Like in the first stanza, the word 'still' is key, acting again polysemically. Line 44: Thou, silent form! It has a two part rhyme scheme, where the last three lines are variable. The treatment of time and memory in the poem are singular: the scene is frozen in time, like a photograph. If you ever think about your house or your car being lonely and sad when you're not there, that's pretty much what Keats is doing with these people and their town.
Do you agree with the poet? Art freezes things in place, including, maybe, this poem that we're reading, because Keats is dead and we're still looking at it. A man standing in silence in a museum observes a Greek urn. That despite all of that something so fragile and detailed and beautiful produced by a skilled hand remained unspoiled and beautiful. Imagined melodies are lovelier than those heard by human ears. That town will forever remain silent and deserted. On line 7, he introduces the contrast of mortality and immortality, with 'deities or mortals'.
Why the struggle to escape? Art arrests desirable experience at a point before it can become undesirable. In fact, we have no idea which urn Keats is talking about. Does the poet really think that the creatures on the urn are happy? One may even ask, Why go on living? It gives some more examples of that. He says that the lovers would always share the excitement of the chase, hot and panting because of it considered and allusion for the act of sex and they remain eternally youthful. And so Keats can take pleasure in the thought that the music will play on forever, and although the lover can never receive the desired kiss, the maiden can never grow older nor lose any of her beauty. Literally speaking, the speaker is addressing the art on the urn.