well, there's my poetry teacher, actually he told us he's not specialized in this field, though had to teach it. I don't blame him and I appreciate his frank words. So, he asked us to search for an explanation for the Symbolism in Yeats' poem, Byzanitum. I tried to find some but as you know that Yeats won the Noble prize, he is actually a genius.It's a bit confusing but I realize that you all would help me find ,a way out!!
1 2
The unpurged images of day recede;

The Emperor's drunken soldiery are abed;

These are the first two lines of it, I need someone to identify only one symbol and explain it , and , I'll try my best to do the rest. I'm a hard worker but I need this as an example. Thanks to all of you , I really appreciate your help.

p.s. I wish I can post the whole poem, but my pc gets disconnected whenever I post anything long. However, I'd try later lest I get disconnected nowEmotion: crying
please, may I ask for a simple thing, if you may, I'd like someone to tell me about a website that I can refer to...

Thanks in advance..
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
Hello SD

To some extent, symbolists such as Yeats didn't intend their symbols to be explained: the symbol's purpose was to arouse certain thoughts and images in the reader's imagination, without conscious intervention.

So first of all you could record the thoughts and images the words evoke; then examine why they do so.

Take lines 5 to 8, for instance:

A starlit or a moonlit dome disdains
All that man is,
All mere complexities,
The fury and the mire of human veins.

We know these lines aren't literal (how could a dome "disdain"?). So what comes into your mind, when you read them?

I guess it might be the dome of the cathedral personified and it might also have a relation with the religious men of the church,i.e., monks and priests. The bit dusky dome can refer to the confusion of the twentieth century since Yeats despised the circumstances of that period, like the war and the new innovations.He was angry and used this image to show how badly humans polluted their universe and nature.MAYBE, I'm not sure.

p.s. Thanks for your help, I don't know how to thank you .Emotion: big smile
That's interesting. Foolishly, I hadn't thought of cathedral domes!

To my mind, the lines also present a contrast between ordinary human goings-on (blood and mire) and slightly longer perspectives (the study of moon and stars). You often find images (both in Yeats's poems and prose) of solitary men, probably in high places (towers, etc.), studying through the night. (As you may know, Yeats bought a ruined tower in Ireland, when he was middle-aged, in the middle of a wood; he used to live there for part of the year.)

What do you make of the next few lines – especially those in bold:

Before me floats an image, man or shade,
Shade more than man, more image than a shade;
For Hades' bobbin bound in mummy-cloth
May unwind the winding path;
A mouth that has no moisture and no breath
Breathless mouths may summon;
I hail the superhuman;
I call it death-in-life and life-in-death.

Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
That you added much to my knowledge is a fact and I'm highly indebted to you.Emotion: big smile

Yeats carries on explaining the image but he's very perplexed and couldn't identify it. Now the most scary part is this about Hades kingdom which was known to be a place of the dead . I think that it's an imaginary place.If Hades was a proper name( I think), then, it's the name of the mummy which is jumping. In order to make one, we need to wrap a fabric around a corpse.So, the jumping mummy might unwind this fabric which is necessary to preserve it.The path might mean the fabric itself. Though it was merely a mummy, it could jump and make a reform.
As you know how dry and breathless the mouth of the dead can be, yet, this very mouth can call someone out! And this is the superhuman for whom the poet chose two contradicting nicknames. It's a breathless mouth that is alive and a mummy that can jump( it might refer to the afterlife). The 4th and the 6th lines, according to my humble thinkingEmotion: embarrassed, can be a call to the rich. During the twentieth century , the lower and working classes suffered alot. Yeats wants to remind the rich that though the poor are breathless , they can summon for they are humans after all.
The life of the twentieth century was comfy for the rich but harmful to both the poor and nature.

p.s. you may laugh your head off at it, but it's just what I think. Sorry for dividing my post, you know my pc,it's an old dog..
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
Show more