Theme: Vivid imagery & Religion

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Type: Six quatrains of rhyming couplets

Background

  • Made of questions
  • Addressing the tiger, the speaker questions its creation
  • Often interpreted to deal with issues of inspiration, mystical knowledge and God
  • Blake contemplates about what kind of God could design and create such an awesome creature

First verse – clearly evokes a powerful sense of the tiger

Language

  • Repetition of “Tyger” sets up a compelling rhythm and of the first verse at the end full circle
  • Poem has a song like quality to is – Blake intended it to be set to music
  • The phrase “burning bright” is alliterative and creates a sense of brilliant colours against the dark night and burning gives the impression of fire which is dangerous and so is the tiger

Religion

  • Blake was devout, but hated the Church of England whose leaders, he felt, manipulated the religion and nature of God
  • Asks many rhetorical questions about God – these are unanswered because questions as to the nature of God cannot be answered
  • Compares God to a blacksmith
  • Reference to “Lamb” is capitalised reference to Jesus is often depicted as a lamb
  • There is an almost chanting quality to the poem again pointing to the religious overtones

Form

  • Six quatrains of rhyming couplets
  • AABB rhyme scheme
  • Regular meter – refer to the power of the tiger
READ:
The Tyger Analysis & Commentary

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