The Wreck of the Deutschland: Stanza 7 - Summary

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      For the sake of humanity, Christ took upon himself the pain and torture and the fact God dwells in beauty and suffering dates from the time of Christ. Galilee was the place that witnessed most of the important events in the life of Christ. This was the Resurrection who gave a new life to the people ending ‘womb life’ or the natural life and welcoming a new phase. Christ’s sufferings and blood that he sweated at Gethsemane always remind the sacrifice he had for us. Hopkins here reminds us of Christ’s birth who was born to Virgin Marry. Christ is considered as a gift to humanity by God. Before the Crucifixion people could only feel Christ’s sufferings but after his Crucifixion, all can feel and realize.

Line by Line Analysis

Lines 1-3: It dates from day / Of his going in Galilee; / Warm-laid grave of a womb-life grey: ‘Galilee’ referred here is in Palestine a place, that had witnessed most of the important events in Christ’s life. The fact that God is in beauty and in suffering too, dates only from the Incarnation of Christ. The entire humanity had the benefit of getting a new life through the death of Christ and his Resurrection. The poet here also talks about the Christian theme of God’s revelation through suffering and sacrifice.

Lines 4-5: Manger, maiden’s knee; / The dense and the driven Passion, and the frightful sweat: Virgin Marry gave birth to Christ and Hopkins gives the idea of Immaculate conception. The word ‘passion’ refers to the intense torture that Christ was forced to undergo before his physical death. Christ also before his crucifixion sweated blood at Gethsemane.

Lines 6-7: Thence the discharge of it, there its swellings to be / Though felt before, though in high flood yet: God’s love for the world was so intense that he gave Christ to it. The Old Testament had already predicted the arrival of Christ. But still one can see the enactment of Christ’s birth and death in the ceremony of the Mars or in the sufferings of Christians.

Line 8: Where none would have known of it, only the heart, being hard at bay: Only the heart can understand and realize the extreme sufferings that Christ was subjected to. It is not easy for everybody to acknowledge this.

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