Part 1 of The Ballad of Reading Gaol

  • Created by: nittyniz
  • Created on: 07-04-21 14:42

Part 1 of The Ballad of Reading Gaol

Key features of the poem to look out for:
ABCBDB rhyme scheme and internal rhyme 
Iambic tetrameter and trimeter 

Proletarian ballad form
Anaphorae and caesurae
Assonance and plosives 
Compounds and noun phrases 
"He did not wear his scarlet coat, For blood and wine are red, And blood and wine were on his hands..."
"...his step seemed light and gay; But I never saw a man who looked So wistfully at the day." - at peace with death
"Upon that little tent of blue Which prisoners call the sky..." - defamiliarisation, Romantic
"With sails of silver by." - evokes feelings of freedom
"I walked, with other souls in pain..."
"Dear Christ! the very prison walls Suddenly seemed to reel, And the sky above my head became Like a casque of scorching steal..."
"The man had killed the thing he loved, And so he had to die."
"The coward does it with a kiss, The brave man with a sword!" - Jesus betrayed by Judas - parallels Bosie's betrayal?
"For each man kills the thing he loves, Yet each man does not die." - metaphorical death
"Who watch him lest himself should rob The prison of its prey." - zoomorphism - prison is a predator 
"Nor, while the terror of his soul Tells him he is not dead, Cross his own coffin..." - as Jesus carried his own cross
"Nor feel upon his shuddering cheek The kiss of Caiaphas." - Caiaphas made sure Judas betrayed Jesus 

1 of 1


No comments have yet been made

Similar English Literature resources:

See all English Literature resources »See all The Ballad of Reading Gaol resources »