DOVER BEACH BY MATTHEW ARNOLD CRITICAL APPRECIATION

CRITICAL APPRECIATION OF DOVER BEACH

Standing at the window with his wife in course of his honeymoon trip to Dover, the poet watches the sea. The sea is calm, the tide is high and the moon shines on the English channel. On the distant French coast, a slight flicker shines shortly and then disappear. The white cliff of Dover can be seen largely in the cave of the shore: Nature is calm beautiful and soothing. But the poet hears the harsh sound caused by the pebbles being moved up by the incoming and receding waves.  ‘grating roar’ was heard by Sophocles also and it induced in his mind the some of the misery in human life which is reflected in his tragedies. Thus, the sound of ebb and flow evokes similar thoughts both in Sophocles and Arnold and his life.

CRITICAL APPRECIATION OF DOVER BEACH BY MATTHEW ARNOLD

There are constant sound and motions that begins and stops and begins again. The trembling rhythm seems to symbol some kind of unending somehow. Harking back to the remote past the poet says that this ‘grating roar’ was heard by Sophocles also and it induced in his mind the some of the misery in human life which is reflected in his tragedies. Thus, the sound of ebb and flow evokes similar thoughts both in Sophocles and Arnold and his life.

The poet broods over the spiritual decline that has played human life are the present situations. With the help of images, the poet talks of religious faith which one helped is supported mankind. But it has gone from life, people have lost faith in religion which has withdrawn from everywhere like the receding wave waking us wide open to the grief and sorrow of life. The loss of religious faith has made it difficult to believe that the universe was to some extent adjusted to human needs.

In this moment of despair and hopelessness, it is love through which man can discover some value in life. It can give solace to the crying soul. Because the world can not offer either joy, love, hope or certainly despite its varied beauty. People can have no peace and continue to suffer pain. From the sea image of a field with a battle continuing in the dark where it is not clear who is the friend and who is the enemy and why they are fighting at all. Without religion faith, the world is like a chaotic battlefield in the dark where people ignorant of their friends and foes are engaged in a clash.

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