John Keats one time said sing Lord Byron that “he ( Byron ) describes what he sees. I describe what I imagine” . Keats is a typically Romantic poet in the manner in which he uses the unstable boundaries of imaginativeness within his verse form to explicate his aesthetic vision which is projected in ‘Ode on a Greek Urn’ . Pope notes that the etymology of ‘aesthetics’ derives from the Grecian significance ‘things perceptible to the sense’ and ‘sensory impressions’ ; within the verse form Keats uses redolent techniques to project the ‘refined sense of pleasure’ which he receives from detecting the ancient piece. For Keats. the piece of art represents a timeless beauty which he longs to accomplish within his ain work ; he hopes that his ain poesy will exceed his impending decease and that he will be remembered good into the hereafter for his chef-d’oeuvres. The verse form is important in the manner in which it portrays aesthetic beauty in ‘artistic media’ whilst raising several inquiries of what is meant by true beauty and whether it is possible for adult male to accomplish the same flawlessness.
In the first stanza of the verse form. Keats expresses his aesthetic vision of the urn by the manner in which he considers the piece of art to be an “unravish’d bride of quietness” . therefore organizing immediate feminine intensions. As noted by Charles Patterson. the physical form of the urn besides lends itself to the female figure. He remarks upon the fact that it is important that Keats chooses to sort the urn as a peculiar gender as all life is created and unfolds through the female organic structure ; as such. the feminine lineation of the urn is seen to supply the characters. which are depicted within the art work. with their graphic life that Keats appears to detect.
This is a typically Romantic method. whereby the poet’s clear imaginativeness is used to give life to an inanimate object by seeing past the rigid. impenetrable surface and diging into the narratives frozen within the “silence” of the piece. It could be that Keats uses this hush to underscore the unhearable communicating which is created between him and the graphics with a deep grasp for the urn and the narratives he sees it as presenting.
The perennial inquiries in the concluding lines of the first stanza construct a climb expectancy and besides heighten the enigma as to the aesthetic beauty of the urn ; at that place appear to be many unreciprocated inquiries sing the narratives which are told within the art work and Keats is intrigued to unknot the secrets which it holds. The inquiries at the same time increase the ambiguity of the urn and make Keats’ aesthetic vision of the object within the reader. Pope remarks that the aesthetic is ‘an antipathy to the ordinary and ugly’ ; Keats’ repeated inquiries heighten the reader’s belief that there is nil simple or field about the urn. with: “What mad chase? What battle to escape” bring forthing a graphic show of the feelings and the emotions of those figures who are immortalised within the urn.
By utilizing “struggle” . Keats acknowledges the despair of the characters to be freed from the marble prison which they are cemented. The verb enhances the aesthetic vision of the art as Keats produces a new dimension to the object which begins to set up the narrative of the “marble men” which he observes. The narrative of the “little town” is further developed by the “wild ecstasy” of the immature twosome proposing a thrilling relationship between the lovers who are pictured. increasing the aesthetic vision of the urn as an component of a sexual relationship is formulated. Keats’ usage of linguistic communication could besides be seen to reflect his ain inner ideas at the clip which he wrote the verse form with the “struggle to escape” associating to his personal labor at being trapped by his unwellness with no agencies of intervention. In this vena. the characters of the urn are besides everlastingly encapsulated in their environment. with no agencies of patterned advance or decision to the narrative which they depict.
Keats besides uses the saving of clip to explicate his aesthetic vision in ‘Ode on a Greek Urn’ . The manner in which the adult female “ can non fade” is used as a solace from Keats to the lover of the maiden. as her beauty will exceed clip and will non botch with age despite the fact that the twosome will ne’er be able to “kiss” and therefore consummate their relationship. Contextually. Keats uses this fancied love affair to non merely show his vision of aesthetic beauty but besides to mirror his ain personal trials. He excessively was in love with a adult female. Fanny Brawne. and merely like the figures of the urn. Keats was unable to move upon his passionate feelings due to his lower societal position and an unsure fiscal state of affairs.
Like the characters which he empathises with. Keats felt consumed in the immoveable cold marble. therefore utilizing his aesthetic vision of the urn to portray his interior desperation. Keats’ enviousness at going immortalised and to stay “unwearied” like the “happy melodist” of the verse form highlights his concerns as a poet. Pope refers to high art. such as the urn as being ‘fine. sublime and timeless’ . and basically. Keats aspired to make literature worthy of the same congratulations. With his Romantic methods. Keats longed for his work to be remembered and outlive him following his tragically early decease from TB.
For Keats. the urn represents a deep sense of loss: “generation waste” displays his horror at the transiency of material objects and the feelings of neglect felt towards them. The piece of graphics which he surveies could be seen as a subsister of a lost age. and is an redolent image of a lost universe which can no longer be visited. Some may state that Keats sees his ain work in this image ; he longs for his poesy to go on to be read and convey pleasance to a broad audience long after his decease. nevertheless he feels concerned at the chance of going forgotten and his work to go unmarked and thankless. as is likely to be the destiny of the urn which he surveies.
Unlike much of his other poesy. ‘Ode on a Greek Urn’ contains a regularity within its stanzas which is non needfully show in the other plants of Keats. This steadfast construction reflects the aesthetic vision of the urn itself. as it provides a solid tightening of look with a form which mirrors the physically stiff nature of the object. Such is the nature of ‘Ode on a Nightingale’ where Keats writes in a ‘bold. explorative’ mode. that it straight contrasts with the ‘Ode on a Grecian Urn’ which is seemingly stripped of any direct look of the poet’s ain feelings. Taking this into history. it comes as a peculiar surprise when in the concluding stanza. Keats’ narrative appears improbably plaintive at the province of the urn and displays a explosion of passion which had antecedently been missing from the verse form.
He begins the concluding stanza with “O Attic form! ” ; making a different. melancholy tone which is expressed by the exclaiming. therefore replacing the old exhilaration and enthusiasm which had been expressed towards the urn. This line emphasises Keats’ aesthetic vision of the art. with “Attic” mentioning to ‘Attica’ . a part of ancient Greece of which Athens was the major metropolis. By adverting a specific location in history. Keats is able to transport the reader to the clip period which the urn embodies. and his aesthetic vision of the graphics is projected as an alive scene.
Klaus Hofman recognises that in the next-to-last line of the concluding stanza. Keats seems to show his beliefs that beauty can merely be as it does on the urn: ‘captured. frozen. artificial’ . Pope besides refers to a expression which supports Keats’ message that such flawlessness can merely of all time manifest itself within art. Arguably the “truth” which Keats refers to is the comfort that adult male should have from detecting a perfect object. The thought that ultimate beauty can merely be in a piece of art such as the urn and can non be achieved by persons should move as a comfort to adult male. and urge us non torment ourselves by endeavoring for the impossible.
Ultimately. Keats is able to show the aesthetic vision of the urn by his message of the intent of art. He shows that as worlds. we should prosecute and unrecorded life by experimentation and that ‘perfection’ is merely an idealistic attack which can be all-consuming. “Beauty is truth. truth beauty” is a farther illustration of how Keats’ linguistic communication reflects the aesthetic vision of the urn. The round quotation mark mirrors the physically circular nature of the urn. whilst heightening the subject that adult male can continually fight for beauty and flawlessness without successfully accomplishing it.
AQA Booklet R. Pope
Romanticism A Critical Reader
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[ 1 ] . R. Pope’s expression: Aestheticss = refined pleasance = art = beauty