William Wordsworth 's London, 1802, By John Milton Metonymically

1072 Words Feb 19th, 2016 null Page
In William Wordsworth’s “London, 1802,” the poet John Milton metonymically symbolizes the artistic excellence and revolutionary vigor the speaker believes England has lost. However, the speaker also appeals to Milton for moral guidance, correlating England’s political and cultural stagnation to a forgotten moral foundation. While the speaker employs parallelism and a wide variety of poetic devices to demonstrate this causality, his conspicuous and incessant use of the colon and semicolon particularly establish this interconnectedness. For example, the speaker uses the semicolon to parallel freedom and power with manners and virtue. Moreover, he uses the colon to correlate Milton’s soul– the moral centre of the self– with his influential voice and nationalistic heart. Finally, the ways in which the speaker connects often unrelated clauses with colons or semicolons unify the sonnet, and demonstrate how each individual line directly relates to and influences each other. The speaker’s colons in “London, 1802” thus create a labyrinth of linkages that establishes causality and attributes England’s loss of Milton’s artistic prowess and political radicalism to a loss of morality. The speaker particularly illustrates the causal relationship between morality and England’s stagnation when he implores Milton to “raise [them] up, return to [them] again; / And give [them] manners, virtue, freedom, and power” (Wordsworth 7-8). Here, “freedom” and “power” carry political and…

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