Adonais: Poem No. 14 - Summary & Analysis

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Stanza 14
Line 118-126
All he had loved, and moulded into thought
From shape and hue and odour and sweet sound.
Lamented Adonais. Morning sought
Her eastern watch-tower, and her hair unbound,
Wet with the tears which should adorn the ground,
Dimmed the aerial eyes that kindle day;
Afar the melancholy Thunder moaned, Pale Ocean in unquiet slumber lay;
And the wild Winds flew round, sobbing in their dismay


      All things in Nature that Adonais loved, all its phenomena, and animate and inanimate objects lamented his death. Morning wept for him, the thunder rumbled in grief, the ocean and the winds joined company.


      L. 118. All—i.e., all aspects. and objects of Nature. Molded into thought— shaped into poetic conceptions. L. 119. From shape...sound—From his sensuous impressions of Nature. Shelley here beautifully sums up the characteristic attitude of Keats to Nature: he was the worshipper of its color; shape, smell and sound. LI. 120-124. Morning day—The idea in this passage is: It was a rainy morning: the eastern sky being overcast with streaks of rain-charged Clouds, the sun was invisible. Thus, morning seemed to mourn the death of Adonais. L. 120. Morning — awn personified as a deity. L. 120-121. Sought....tower—appeared in the eastern horizon from where she is accustomed to have a view of the earth. Now she appeared there to look at the dead body of Adonais who loved her so much. L. 121. Her hair unbound—her hair which she let hang loose around her in her grief; figurative for the long streaks of grey Clouds on the eastern horizon in the morning. It was a cloudy; rainy morning.

      L. 122. Wet with...ground—her hair was wet with dew which now looked like her tears and did not fall on the ground to adorn it Shelley here, as in so many other places, makes wonderful poetic images out of the truths of physical nature (science). Dew forms only when the sky is clear; the sky being cloudy, there is no dew on the ground, they being charged in the Clouds as rain-water.

      L. 123.—her hair (i.e., the rain-charged clouds) darkened the sun which makes the day-light. Aerial eyes—the sun kindle—light up. L. 124. Afar—far away in the sky Moaned— rumbled as if in sullen grief. L. 125. Pale...lay—the ocean pale with grief lay in unpeaceful, disturbed sleep. L. 126. Wild Winds—winds mad with grief. Sobbing—crying in convulsions. Dismay—fear; inconsolable grief.

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