Maude Clare



Adapts the Ballad Form

  • ABCB Rhyme Scheme - Twisted Love Story
  • Uses Dialogue - goes with the oral tradition associated with the Ballad form
  • Dialogue also goes with the realism of the confronation. Furthermore, we hear the voices of the characters (reported speech) 
  • 2nd Person Narrative - Anonymous - Onlookers telling the story
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Stanza 1

The wedding ceremony is over and Thomas gets some advice from his mother.

Quatranes Joined Together - Represents the joining together in marriage between Nell and Thomas. A sense of unity.

"His bride was like a village maid" "Maude Clare was like a queen." - These similies create roles that the other should have as it's Nell's wedding day and should be like a queen. These reflects the personalities of the character and sets up the situtation to be unsettling if the anonymous speaker believes that Maude Clare is more important that Nell on her wedding day. 

The voice of the mother - Includes dialogue to give a personal sense of realism. Also it aligns with society's reputation and tradition that they need to live a 'true ' live like herself and his father. 

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Stanza 2

The mother continues to speak and realises that both Thomas and Nell have grown 'pale'

Repetition of 'Pale' - This foreshadows the relationship, it singles out a difference between the Mother and Father wno have been together for 'thirty years' and shows that there is a problem in their relationship, slightly unsettling.

'Your father' - This is further compounded as it compares the Thomas with the father. Like father, like Son. This makes it more emotional and conveys a sense of realism. 

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Stanza 3

The speaker realises that the Thomas and Nell is 'pale.' The speaker realises Maude Clare.

Repetition of 'pale' - Reflects the sickly manner of the situtation and how uncomfortable Nell and Thomas are and perhaps suggests some romantic link with Maude Clare and Thomas is he grows pale when he 'gazed' upon her

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Stanza 4

Maude Clare begins to speak to the couple. Dialogue!

Repetition of 'brought my gift' - Not only does this build tension but she emphasises the message she is trying to convey as if she's obsessing over what she needs to sat

Repetition of 'bless' - This repetition given to a character who is obviously mysterious, conveys a bitter, cursing tone as if she's saying it sarcastically in spite of the happy couple.

Marriage Bed - This bitterness is reinforced by the mention of a marriage bed, as if she is blessing the fertility of the couple. She's cursing them with fertility which is rather a weird situation. 

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Stanza 5

Maude Clare directly addresses Thomas and their former relatonship is revealed. 

'Here's my half of the golden chain' - Golden have connotations of worth and this alludes to the fact that he valued her and spent money on Maude Clare and perhaps was in a loving relationship with her. Establishes their former relationship. He loved/valued her and also wore it upon his neck.

'That day' - Establishes a part of their relationship which is inclusive to them and important to only them. They both know what they are talking about, conveys a sense of intimacy in their relationship. 

'Ankle-deep' - This perhaps in a sexual innuendo, inverting the stigma upon unmarried relationships upon him to give him shame by mentioning it during his wedding. Shows a lack of respect for their intimacy of relationship. 

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Stanza 6

She continues to attack Thomas with details of their relationship

'Faded leaves' - As natural imagery has been apparent throughout Maude Clare's speech, when she says that leaves have faded, this may be a symbolise that her feelings for Thomas have dissolved and that she feels no emotions connected to him anymore. Their relationship has faded hence why she is embarrassing him at his own wedding.

'Lilies are budding now' - Maude Clare may be signifying with this natural imagery that she may be pregnant which is ironic when she blessed Nell with feritlity. Shows her bitterness. Also she may be trying to make Nell jealous as if she has something that Nell hasn't. 

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Stanza 7

Thomas is a wuss and knows not what to say.

Sibalance of 'Strove to match her scorn with scorn' - This signifies how insulting she had been and how badly he is annoyed and upset by Maude Clare he is,he wants to get back at her just as scathingly. Yet, all he can do is 'falter' and cannot insult her perhaps because she still feels attached to her.

Address of Maude Clare - This attachment to Maude Clare is adamant even more as he cannot even muster out a sentence nor can he explain the situation to Nell. He calls her 'Lady' showing the status she has to him and repeats her name twice as if she is the centre of his attention which is bad when he just got married to another woman. 

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Stanza 8

Maude Clare now turns to address Nell

'My Lady Nell' - This could be complete sarcasm as Maude Clare doesn't respect her as shown by her rudeness to attack them at the end of her wedding. This creates a bitter tone creating Maude Clare to be an upset woman. 

Natural Imagery throughout as if it were a 'gift' - Ironically, it isn't a gift which is her point. Her innocence is going to be stolen. As shown when the 'bloom were gone' - Maude Clare no longer sees Thomas as diserable as would rather take 'dew' over 'flowers.' Implies sex which would reinforce the 'lillies budding now' 

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Stanza 9

Maude Clare finishes her speech declaring that she is done with Thomas

'My' - This personal prounouns conveys some sense of ownership over Thomas as she used to have it and Thomas used to be hers as if she is letting Nell have him when Nell and Thomas have already married.

'Fickle heart' - A dig at Thomas. His changing nature made him choose Nell over Maude Clare very impulsively and quickly. She blames him for this changing of love.

'Love:' This colon in the punctuation seperates the two parts of the stanza. She is seperating herself from Nell and Thomas. She is ready to let go.

'Take it or leave it' 'I wash my hands thereof' - She is done and conveys a sense of finality. She lets him go and almost condemns Nell to deal with Thomas who she cannot deal with anymore. She tries to embarras Thomas by declaring it 'take it or leave it' as if a choice needs to be made. 

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Stanza 10

Nell's voice is heard for the first time. She confirms that she has married him, not Nell.

'My' - This conveys a rather smug voice as if Nell has the upper hand in this debate. She's married and now she has ownership over Thomas, not Maude Clare - embarrases Maude Clare through this possesive pronoun. 

'For better or for worse' - This mimicing of marriage vows conveys that she's committed to this relationship as she would happily pick up the pieces of the relationship that Maude never did. 

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Stanza 11

Nell will make Thomas love her. Sense of finality of their relationship.

Repetition of 'More' - The repetition of this comparative adjective allows Nell to admit that Maude is better than her showing Nell to be knowing and wise - characterises Nell as a wise woman who knows her battles and Thomas' past.

'Me best of all, Maude Clare'  - A sense of finality is conveyed, Thomas will love Nell as much as he did Maude Clare, she loves him already and will make him 'loves me best' as if their is a competition between Nell and Maude Clare and Nell knows she was won depsite not being loved with all of his heart but mainly because he married her and can't divorce her in this society. 

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