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“When We Two Parted” by Lord Byron Megan McIntyre British Literature pd. 1.

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1 “When We Two Parted” by Lord Byron Megan McIntyre British Literature pd. 1

2 When we two parted In silence and tears, Half broken-hearted To sever for years, Pale grew thy cheek and cold, Colder thy kiss; Truly that hour foretold Sorrow to this. The dew of the morning Sunk chill on my brow– It felt like the warning Of what I feel now. Thy vows are all broken, And light is thy fame; I hear thy name spoken, And share in its shame. They name thee before me, A knell to mine ear; A shudder comes o'er me– Why wert thou so dear? They know not I knew thee, Who knew thee too well– Long, long shall I rue thee, Too deeply to tell. In secret we met– In silence I grieve, That thy heart could forget, Thy spirit deceive. If I should meet thee After long years, How should I greet thee?– With silence and tears.

3 About Lord Byron Lord George Gordon Byron (1788-1824) He was a ladies’ man to say the least During his marriage to Annabella Milbanke, he had 5 mistresses and a girlfriend. The marriage to Annabella Milbanke lasted approximately a year, just long enough to father a daughter. Soon after they filed for legal separation. Fathered an illegitimate child with Claire Clairemont not long after separating with his wife.

4 About the Poem… The speaker of the poem is Lord Byron himself, the poem is predicted to be written about his relationship with Lady Frances Webster, a married woman. Broken into 4 stanzas 8 lines per stanza 32 lines in total What characteristics of Romantic poetry are present? An interest in personal experience and subjective emotions

5 First Stanza When we two parted In silence and tears, Half broken-hearted To sever for years, Pale grew thy cheek and cold, Colder thy kiss; Truly that hour foretold Sorrow to this Sorrow to this. ABABCDCDABABCDCD Foreshadowing: The silence and tears foreshadowed the misery that was to come. “Half broken-hearted” implies that perhaps only that either: A)This is a sad ending for them but they shall recover or B)That perhaps only one of the two people in the “relationship” was truly hurt by the ending.

6 Second Stanza The dew of the morning Sunk chill on my brow– It felt like the warning Of what I feel now. Thy vows are all broken, And light is thy fame; I hear thy name spoken, And share in its shame. EFEFGHGHEFEFGHGH Symbolism: The dew sinking chill into his brow symbolizes the horror that is about to befall him and the emotions that are swirling within him now.

7 Third Stanza They name thee before me, A knell to mine ear; A shudder comes o'er me– Why wert thou so dear? They know not I knew thee, Who knew thee too well– Long, long shall I rue thee, Too deeply to tell. IJIJKLKLIJIJKLKL Imagery: A shudder comes o'er me– Why wert thou so dear? Imagine a man shuddering with a pensive look on his face. Knell- the noise made when a bell rings slowly, usually for a funeral. Favorite Line: Long, long shall I rue thee, Too deeply to tell.

8 Fourth Stanza In secret we met– In silence I grieve, That thy heart could forget, Thy spirit deceive. If I should meet thee After long years, How should I greet thee?– With silence and tears. MNMNOPOPMNMNOPOP KBKBKBKB OR Tone: The tone of this stanza is one of mourning and loss. He can’t express his grief publically and will have to pretend as if they never met if they see each other again in years to come.

9 An unacknowledged fifth stanza? "... I had the melancholy task of prophesying as much many years ago --- in some lines --- of which three or four first stanzas only were printed --- and of course without names --- or allusions --- and with a false date --- I send you the concluding stanza --- which never was printed with the others. --- “ From Lord Byron to his cousin Lady Harding in a letter The publication date of the poem was changed to protect the lady’s identity. He actually wrote the poem in 1813, but he had the date changed to 1808 so that no one would be suspicious.

10 Fifth stanza Then --- fare thee well --- Fanny --- Now doubly undone --- To prove false unto many --- As faithless to One --- Thou art past all recalling Even would I recall --- For the woman once falling Forever must fall. This stanza was taken out of the publication of the poem to protect the identity of Lady Frances Webster. This fifth stanza was written in a letter from Lord Byron to his cousin Lady Hardy.


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