Elegy is a shape of literature that can be described as a poem or music in the shape of elegiac couplets, written in honor of someone deceased. It generally laments or mourns the death of the individual.
Elegy is derived from the Greek work elegus, which means that a music of bereavement sung along side a flute. The kinds of elegy we see today have been introduced inside the sixteenth century. Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard, through Thomas Gray, and When Lilacs Last within the Dooryard Bloom’d, by way of Walt Whitman are the 2 most popular examples of elegy.
Features of Elegy
Usually, elegies are recognized by means of several characteristics of style:
Just like a classical epic, an elegy typically begins with the invocation of the muse, after which proceeds by way of referencing conventional mythology.
It frequently includes a poet who knows a way to phrase thoughts imaginatively inside the first person.
Questions are raised via the poet about destiny, justice, and fate.
The poet associates the events of the deceased with activities in his personal life by using drawing a diffused comparison.
This sort of digression offers the poet space to move beyond the primary or crude situation to a deeper level where the connotations is probably metaphorical.
Towards the stop the poet usually attempts to provide comfort to ease the pain of the situation. Christian elegies normally proceed from sorrow and misery, to hope and happiness due to the fact they are saying that loss of life is only a hindrance inside the manner of passing from the mortal state into the everlasting state.
An elegy is not usually based totally on a plot.
Examples of Elegy from Literature
Example #1: In Memory of W. B. Yeats (By W. H. Auden)
“With the farming of a verse
Make a vineyard of the curse,
Sing of human unsuccess
In a rapture of distress;
In the deserts of the heart
Let the healing fountain start,
In the prison of his days
Teach the free man how to praise.”
Example #2: O Captain! My Captain! (By Walt Whitman)
“O CAPTAIN! My Captain! Our fearful journey is done;
The deliver has weather’d each rack, the prize we sought is won;
The port is near, the bells I hear, the humans all exulting,
While observe eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring:
But O heart! Heart! Heart!
O the bleeding drops of red,
Where on the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen bloodless and dead.O Captain! My Captain! upward push up and listen the bells;
Rise up–for you the flag is flung–for you the bugle trills; 10
For you bouquets and ribbon’d wreaths–for you the seashores a-crowding;
For you they call, the swaying mass, their keen faces turning;
Here Captain! Dear father!
This arm beneath your head;
It is a few dream that on the deck,
You’ve fallen bloodless and dead.
My Captain does not answer, his lips are faded and still;
My father does no longer feel my arm, he has no pulse nor will;
The ship is anchor’d safe and sound, its voyage closed and done;
From fearful ride, the victor deliver, is available in with object won; 20
Exult, O beaches, and ring, O bells!
But I, with mournful tread,
Walk the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen cold and dead.”
Whitman wrote this elegy for Abraham Lincoln (sixteenth president of the United States).
Function of Elegy
Elegy is one of the richest literary forms because it has the potential to express emotions that deeply influence humans. The strongest of the equipment elegy makes use of is its reliance on recollections of folks that are not any more. Most of the poets who wrote elegies were obviously awed with the aid of the frailty of human beings, and how the world absolutely forgets about the deceased at a few point.
However, the feature of elegy is not as restrained as it is thought. Whenever we take a look at elegy examples, what comes to mind are feelings like sorrow, grief, and lamentation; but, a examine of the Latin elegy tells us otherwise. A remarkable deal of genre created in western literature was inspired by Latin elegy, which was no longer always so somber. The most well-known elegiac poets in Latin literature, together with Catullus, Ovid, and Propertius, used humor, irony, even slotted narratives into a poem and still called them elegy.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw