The Rape of The Lock: Lines 309-314 - Summary & Analysis

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Lines: 309-314. Meanwhile, declining from.....the toilet cease.

      Summary: As the day comes to a close around four o'clock the time for dinner, people from different walks of life become restless to finish their work. The judges in their hurry not to miss their dinner, deliver judgment against the accused without studying the case carefully. The members of the jury too do not go into the case properly and in their hurry to be in time for dinner to pass the verdict of 'guilty', meaning death. In, those days, capital punishment was awarded for even minor crimes. The traders and merchants, too leave the stock exchange in a hurry and even the ladies who have been occupied for several hours beautifying themselves labor hurriedly for their dinner.

      Critical Analysis: In these satirical lines the poet at one stroke has ridiculed judges, jurymen, merchants and aristocratic ladies. Pope has made it seem that dinner was the one thing that these men and women had been waiting for, so much so that passing a death verdict or leaving one's business incomplete was of little importance.

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