Dover Beach

801 WordsAug 25, 20124 Pages
Dover Beach Essay In the symbolic poem “Dover Beach” written by Matthew Arnold the main idea is that of change. The poet uses language features and techniques such as assonance, extended metaphor and adjectives as well as using symbolism. The effect of this is to decorate the poem and to enhance the way the main idea of science overthrowing religion is being shown. The poet, Matthew Arnold, uses descriptive language, language techniques and symbolism to dramatically enhance the poem, titled ‘Dover Beach’. He uses adjectives and punctuation such as Caesura for maximum effect. In the poem the “calm” and “full” sea represents science, trying to overthrow the flickering lights on top of the vast and mighty “English cliff” and the…show more content…
The “turbid ebb and flow” are two adjectives that show us that the tide is moving all the murky, unclear water around and this is referring to the sea. Matthew Arnold then goes on to compare us to Sophocles as this phrase of the poem shows “we find also” which directly links back to the extended metaphor located in this stanza. This is a direct allusion between these two eras of Sophocles and Arnold. In the final stanza the poet pleads with us to see that there is “nor love, nor light, nor help, nor peace” as “ignorant armies clash by night”. This effect of listing shows human impurities such as greed for power and wealth. Arnold desperately wants the world to unite under religion and create a better community. This is genuinely showing the theme of change. In conclusion, Matthew Arnold has successfully shown how religion is fading and science more dominant with every passing day. Arnold uses symbolism like the sea and the cliffs, language techniques like assonance, alliteration, metaphor, allusion and numerous adjectives to do
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