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Thomas Gray

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Thomas Gray





Thomas Gray was born in London , he was educated first at Etan ,then at Cambridge.

He was regarded as one of the greatest scholars in Europe and  Gray thought that there was a separation between the spoken langu 141g62b age and the language used in poetry.

In his style there were a Neo-classical elements but also Pre-romantic Themes.

His masterpiece is  Elegy written in Country Churchyard, wrote after Gray's best friend death.

This poem can be divided into three parts:

In the first part there's the description of the countryside;

In the second part the description of the village , the graveyard and the forefathers;

In the final part he became more personal: he describes his death and his funeral.



In the first part of the elegy is evening and the poet is alone in a country churchyard, the sigh of the tombs of the "rude forefathers of the hamlet" call up in the poet's mind images of humble (modesta) country life.

A novelty(novitą) in this poem is represented by the setting which is rural.

The poets describes the countryside and the poem is set in a particular moment between the end of the sun and the start of the evening. Another novelty is represented by the description of nature.

After he describes the people who had lived in the village in the past. Those people were humble and the poet says that they are sleeping. It contribute to create a peaceful atmosphere. The sight of the graveyard induces the poet to meditate on life and death. He describes daily moments from the lives of these people. They were farmer and they worked hard and they joys were very simple.

Gray compares the humble lot of poor people with the great careers from which fate has excluded them. The poor remain anonymous because they do not have the opportunity to become famous.

Gray wrote that all the men, rich and poor, are equal in death, and a pompous tomb cannot restore life.

Gray compares the humble lot of poor people with the great careers from which fate has excluded them. The poor remain anonymous because they do not have the opportunity to become famous.






In the Final part the poet addresses himself. The poet describes the thing that he used to do. He was a methodical, meditative and solitary person. He describes then the possibly day of his death, when a passer-by would ask the farmer about the poet.


The rhyme scheme is ab-ab-cd-cd ,and Gray in this elegy used  the inversion which consist in reversing the normal English word order of a sentence.

This figure was used for example in third line, fourth and fifth lines.

This figure was used for: emphasize a particular idea, make  the language more solemn, fit a line into a particular rhyme scheme.

The opening stanza contains a direct reference by the poet to himself for given to the poem a lyrical quality through  the expression of feeling and emotions.

In the second third and fourth stanzas  there is a description of the setting, the adjectives used are solemn, secret, solitary while the names are landscape, moon, forefathers and finally the verbs are fait ,complain and sleep.





















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