Robert browning my last duchess summary. "My Last Duchess" Poem by Robert Browning 2022-10-31
Robert browning my last duchess summary Rating:
"My Last Duchess" is a dramatic monologue written by Robert Browning in 1842. The poem is narrated by the Duke of Ferrara, who is giving a tour of his palace to a messenger from another nobleman. As they walk, the Duke points out a portrait of his last wife, the Duchess, and begins to speak about her.
The Duke reveals that he was unhappy with his wife's behavior and mannerisms, particularly her ability to show kindness and affection to everyone she met. He describes her as being "too easily impressed," and he feels that she was not worthy of his love and attention. The Duke implies that he had the Duchess killed because of her unfaithfulness and her lack of devotion to him.
Throughout the poem, the Duke's tone is arrogant and possessive. He sees the Duchess as a possession that he has control over, and he is offended by her lack of obedience. The Duke's obsession with control and his belief in his own superiority are reminiscent of the societal norms of the time, which placed a great emphasis on the authority of men and the subservience of women.
Despite the Duke's contempt for the Duchess, the reader is left feeling sympathetic towards her. The Duke's jealousy and insecurity are palpable, and it is clear that he is unable to truly appreciate the Duchess for who she was. The poem serves as a commentary on the dangers of possessiveness and the importance of treating others with respect and kindness.
In conclusion, "My Last Duchess" is a powerful and thought-provoking poem that explores themes of love, control, and the societal expectations of men and women. Through the voice of the Duke, Browning presents a cautionary tale about the dangers of possessiveness and the importance of treating others with respect and kindness.
My Last Duchess Summary
In the poem, the Duke comes across as a callous and selfish man who cares only for himself. The most engaging element of the poem is probably the speaker himself, the duke. Likewise, what he expects of his wives, particularly of this woman whose portrait continuesÂ to supplyÂ him with fodder for performance, suggests a deeper psychology than one meant solely for criticism. In these lines, the Duke uncovers the real depth of his sin. The Duke starts recalling the portrait sessions and the Duchess. It engages the reader on a number of levels — historical, psychological, ironic, theatrical, and more. Also at play psychologicallyÂ is that theÂ human ability to rationalize our hang-ups.
The objectification the Duchess suffers at the hands of her husband can be even witnessed in the way he remembers her as a portrait. The most important fact is that these words reveal his mental disposition before the Duchess death, which suggests that he did not care about her and did not love her at all. The Duke took passion and pride in what he had done to his wife. It is important to be careful about who we trust in our lives because they could easily abuse their power and hurt us. Women were not seen as equal to men, and they were expected to behave in a certain way. The emissary is there on the behalf of quite a powerful family. He complains about her showing the same amount of appreciation to others as she does to him, which makes the Duke considerably jealous.
He took friendly smiles and conversations as an assumption of them sleeping together and immediately took her life without question. As the Duke and the emissary walk leave the painting behind, the Duke points out other notable artworks in his collection. She was forced to live in a foreign city with a man she did not love, and she was constantly watched and controlled by her husband. Likewise, what he expects of his wives, particularly of this woman whose portrait continues to provide him with fodder for performance, suggests a deeper psychology than one meant solely for criticism. In his mind, the only way to solve this problem is to murder his wife. The duke seems controlled by certain forces: his own aristocratic bearing; his relationship to women; and lastly, this particular duchess who confounded him.
The Duke begins reminiscing about the portrait sessions, then about the Duchess herself. He even goes so far as to say that he will kill the Count if he does not agree to his demands. Here, we see the way the Duke describes the portrait of his dead wife. This circumstance makes the picture of his personality even gloomier because along with narcissism and haughtiness, the Duke demonstrates his covetousness and greed, which are also the traits of the evil. He was so caught up in his jealousy that he was not thinking rationally.
My Last Duchess Robert Browning Summary & Analysis
The first contradiction to consider is how charming the duke actually is. This gentleman is shown the portrait of his last duchess and the way he narrates his relationship with her is the focus of the poem. Thus, we see how her jovial nature did not go went down well with him. It would be tempting to suggest Browning wants to paint him as a weasel, but knowing the poet's love of language, it's clear that he wants us to admire a character who can manipulate language so masterfully. In the course of the negotiation, he reveals himself to be a man who is obsessed with power and control.
It is the captured moment in art which is lasting becomes the message of the poem. He is the speaker of the poem. In the poem, the Duke is obsessed with controlling his Duchess, and he ultimately has her killed when she does not conform to his expectations. He is also very manipulative, and he uses his words to try to control the conversation and the way that the envoy perceives him. GradeSaver, 27 January 2013 Web. Such way of thinking is narcissism that has been long shown as some of the most negative features of a human personality. He is practically a jealousy symbol.
Such a move is out of the question — "who'd stoop to blame this kind of trifling? As the Duke has been recently widowed, he is talking to him about his marriage. The most obvious is his marriage — the use of the word "last" in the title implies that there are several others, perhaps with curtain-covered paintings along the same hallway where this one stands. The contrast between the whole narration of his, where he tries to speak about his wife in a positive and even pedestaling way, and these words, where he reveals his true inner thinking regarding his wife is remarkable. Compact Bedford Introduction to Literature: Reading, Thinking, Writing. The jealousy and the need to establish hierarchical control over the woman could have been a sufficient motive for the use of violence as a way to stop the Duchess from acting in a way the Duke disliked. In the end, she was murdered by the very man who claimed to love her.
Robert Browning: Poems “My Last Duchess” Summary and Analysis
There are no lengths that the Duke will go to when he is in his jealous rage. The way he explains that he had the duchess killed — "I gave commands; Then all smiles stopped together" — shows a facility for avoiding the truth through choice of language. They were not allowed to vote, and they did not have many rights. And indeed, the questionÂ of cashÂ is revealed atÂ the topÂ during aÂ way that colorsÂ the wholeÂ poem. He is a man who is consumed by his power and control. In fact, the duke's excessive demand for control ultimately comes across as his most defining characteristic.
Rather, the specific historical setting of the poem harbors much significance: the Italian Renaissance held a particular fascination for Browning and his contemporaries, for it represented the flowering of the aesthetic and the human alongside, or in some cases in the place of, the religious and the moral. These words of the Duke carry the existing nature of the Italian lovers in the sixteenth century. This work really kept me hooked until the end. He shows his arrogance by bragging about having his wife murdered to an agent of the count. By no means can we justify the idea that the duke is willing to transcend class, but at the same time he does allow a transgression of the very hierarchy that had previously led him to have his wife murdered rather than discuss his problems with her. Thus, he is showing the envoy around his palace. Also, in the same lines stated before he will not communicate with her, he feels as if it beneath him.
"My Last Duchess" by Robert Browning: The Gloominess of the Character's Soul
His irony goes even further when he reminds the envoy that he truly wants only the woman herself, even as he is clearly stressing the importance of a large dowry tinged with a threat of his vindictive side. The Duke is a man who is full of insecurities. Thus the temporal setting allows Browning to again explore sex, violence, and aesthetics as all entangled, complicating and confusing each other: the lushness of the language belies the fact that the Duchess was punished for her natural sexuality. Killing her is the only thing he can think of to do. Also, in the same lines stated before he will not communicate with her, he feels as if it beneath him.