In the Epitaph, Thomas Gray shows his discontent toward the way that life and death are categorized on this planet. He speaks of earth as a place which holds people for the time being that they are going through this grand cycle of what is called life.
When somebody only “rests his head upon the lap of Earth” it is not a way of approving the way that people are laid down for their final resting. The Epitaph shows , properly titled, the lot about how people are being brought up and brought down in a dark sort of way. Someone’s personal epitaph is just a place where their head rests and Even “Fair Science frowned” on the aspects of the person’s life and now the incapacity that they have toward this world. Their one and only sole purpose in this world is to waste space in the earth and rot away for eternity.
Gray’s style is very intriguing. He speaks of god and how there are certain things around that are only now known as “frailties” of what used to be life. Gray speaks out against the way this person was treated in society which is symbolic of how people are being treated as a whole and the hollowness and shallowness of people in the world. Now the person is dead, there is no other help that you could give him. “Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere” was how the man lived, and although his soul was a true one, he was still a marked man, and now he is only marked with a stone that protrudes from the ground known as The Epitaph.
God is a part of life which gray dispises. He goes against the idea of a belief in one immortal being who rules over people and casts judgments and leaves some people for broke. “The bosom of his father and his god” were those that were unhelpful in the dead man’s life, because he ended up just as everyone else will, dead, it is just that he was not blessed with as much life. Gray probably knew someone who died at a young age and it had a traumatizing effect on him, then he turned to writing of dark and dreary times and those of the epitaphs and of graveyards and the beliefs of gods and how they relate to life and death.
Thomas Gray’s The Epitaph shows the way that we treat moral and social problems and help to alert us of another and how faulty our beliefs towards the juxtaposition between life and death are in our society.
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