The Rape of The Lock: Lines 663-668 - Summary & Analysis

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Lines: 663-668. Oh: if to.....a sin to paint

      Summary: These lines occur towards the end of the poem and form part of Clarissa's plea for good humour on the part of women. Here a deeper note is struck and we are reminded of the tragic undertones of human existence. The beauty of exterior must be accompanied by inner qualities, for the former is short lasting. If it were not so, if dancing the whole night and dressing the whole day could make one immune from death or the small-pox, gaiety alone might be our guiding star. None would bother about the duties of the household nor learn anything or practical use in life. Using patches and even throwing sidelong glances might in that case be worthy of a saint nor would the painting of lips and of the cheeks be then looked as a wrong.

      Critical Analysis: Pope has convincingly conveyed the moral of his mock-heroic poem through Clarissa's speech. It refers to the prevalent shortcomings of the fashionable women of his age.

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