When Browning himself was asked about the meaning of two lines in the poem So the duke is constantly addressing this man as Sir As noted above, the painting of Fra Pandolf portrait reveals how the duke orchestrates the situation.
In lines 45 and 46 the poem shudders and shocks. As earlier indicated, the duke has always associated his last duchess with beautiful things of nature. Or did she die in sorrow, informing the artist to paint that spot of joy in defiance of her pretentious jealous husband?
What sort of a man have we here? His musings give way to a diatribe on her disgraceful behavior: Everything that the listener hears about her is filtered through the mind and voice of the duke. It must be noted also that many lines are not pure iambic pentameter.
The desperate need to do this mirrors the efforts of Victorian society to mold the behavior—gsexual and otherwise—gof individuals. Again the theme is dominance, the Roman god of the sea managing to control the tiny sea-horse, just as the duke controls the picture by being the only one allowed to move the curtain.
This grew; I gave commands; Then all smiles stopped together. The lines do not employ end-stops; rather, they use enjambment—gthat is, sentences and other grammatical units do not necessarily conclude at the end of lines.
The duchess treated everything with the same light touch, which must have displeased the duke, despite him being her closest bosom friend or sexual partner? Why would a man who has had so much trouble with his first duchess want a second wife? The debate goes on and will likely never end. It seems the broker emissary also wanted to ask this same question but the duke got in there first with his slick answer.
Perhaps he is pointing a refined finger as the first line starts. My favour at her breast, The dropping of the daylight in the West, The bough of cherries some officious fool Broke in the orchard for her, the white mule She rode with round the terrace—all and each Would draw from her alike the approving speech, Or blush, at least.
Browning is known to have researched into certain aspects of Renaissance Italy, studying well known figures of the time to help with his poetic endeavours.
As the Duke and the emissary walk leave the painting behind, the Duke points out other notable artworks in his collection. Stylistically, Browning has written a tour de force. Browning reveals this trait by bracketing the poem with artistic images of control. Surely, he is a very jealous man.
Indeed, the poem provides a classic example of a dramatic monologue: In fact, the irony is profound, for with each word spoken in an attempt to criticize his last duchess, the duke ironically reveals his utterly detestable nature and how far he is from seeing it himself.
The duchess smiled at him yes, but it was the same smile she gave everyone. Yet he never once mentions love or his willingness to emerge from his own ego.
Who he addresses is unknown at first but later it becomes clear that the listener is an envoy marriage broker, emissary representing another aristocrat. Commentary But Browning has more in mind than simply creating a colorful character and placing him in a picturesque historical scene. The Renaissance was a time when morally dissolute men like the Duke exercised absolute power, and as such it is a fascinating study for the Victorians: She had A heart—how shall I say?
Notice Neptune, though, Taming a sea-horse, thought a rarity, Which Claus of Innsbruck cast in bronze for me! The fifty-six lines are all in iambic pentameter couplets. Perhaps the duke took a dislike to her constant innocent optimism and equal treatment for all approach to life.
Perhaps in real life he never was able to inspire such blushes or glances from his wife?Line by Line Analysis of My Last Duchess My Last Duchess, a dramatic monologue, is a single stanza poem made up of heroic couplets (heroic is a term used for iambic lines), all fully rhyming. Lines 1 - 4.
Complete summary of Robert Browning's My Last Duchess. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of My Last Duchess. eNotes Home; Homework Help; (line 47), so the fifty-six lines.
A summary of “My Last Duchess” in Robert Browning's Robert Browning’s Poetry. Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of Robert Browning’s Poetry and what it means. Perfect for acing essays, tests, and. My Last Duchess Analysis “My Last Duchess” is a poem loosely based on historic events and historic figures written by Robert Browning.
We are to gather that the figure speaking in “ My Last Duchess ” is Alfonso, the Duke. Summary of Section I (Lines ) of the poem My Last Duchess. Line-by-line analysis. Summary of Section II (Lines ) of the poem My Last Duchess.