Text of poem taken from poetry
• He clasps the crag with crooked hands;
• Close to the sun in lonely lands,
• Ring'd with the azure world, he stands.
The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls;
• He watches from his mountain walls,
• And like a thunderbolt he falls.
About the author from Wikipedia
• Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson, FRS (6 August 1809 – 6
October 1892) wasPoet Laureate of Great Britain and Ireland during
much of Queen Victoria's reign and remains one of the most
popular British poets.
• Tennyson excelled at penning short lyrics, such as "Break, Break,
Break", "The Charge of the Light Brigade", "Tears, Idle Tears" and
"Crossing the Bar". Much of his verse was based
on classical mythological themes, such as Ulysses, although In
Memoriam A.H.H.was written to commemorate his best
friend Arthur Hallam, a fellow poet and fellow student at Trinity
College, Cambridge, who was engaged to Tennyson's sister, but died
from a brain haemorrhage before they could marry. Tennyson also
wrote some notable blank verse including Idylls of the King,
"Ulysses", and "Tithonus". During his career, Tennyson attempted
drama, but his plays enjoyed little success.
• The poem has personal and
Christian/mythological or religious and political
• The eagle could be Tennyson, or any proud
person, or Christ or the devil or America or a
warning to colonial Britain about the
consequences of pride even , if looked at
symbolically and allegorically.
• But it is basically a nature poem, praising the
eagle’s beauty and power.
• The crag/outcrop of rock is sharp and jagged, but the eagle can hold on to
it. His claws look like hands.
The cliff is so high it looks closer to the sun than to the earth. Perched in
such a high place, the eagle is surrounded by blue sky in a circle around his
The sea also resembles an old man: it has wrinkles. The eagle is so high up
that the waves look like small, crisscrossing lines moving slowly toward
This eagle does what eagles spend most of their time doing: looking
around. Eagles have great eyes, and the craggy mountain cliff provides the
perfect vantage point for seeing everything below. He is like a look out on
The eagle dove off the cliff so fast that he looked like a bolt of lightning.
Maybe he spied something tasty to eat below, or maybe he just wanted to
stretch his wings. Either way, he's too quick for our eyes to follow.
• The eagle dove off the cliff so fast that he
looked like a bolt of lightning. Maybe he spied
something tasty to eat below, or maybe he
just wanted to stretch his wings. Either way,
he's too quick for our eyes to follow.
• What is the theme of ‘The Eagle' by Tennyson?
• The theme of The Eagle by Alfred Tennyson is the
perception of the eagle of his invulnerability. He
can fly near the sun and higher than a mountain. I
think it becomes obvious that the theme is no
matter how high you seem to be , something or
someone can still bring you down. It can also
mean the inevitability of death that can strike like
a lightning anytime.
• The Eagle is a poem of two stanzas with a rhyme
scheme of a,a,a. By using alliteration (assonance
and consonance) – “He clasps the crag with
crooked hands”, metaphors – “the wrinkled sea”,
personification – “crooked hands” and simile –
“like a thunderbolt”, Lord Tennyson describes
through imagery – “ringed,” “azure world,” - the
eagle and its surroundings powerfully, making it
not only a poem on beauty and nature but also
turning the bird into a symbol for strength,
power, pride and (the folly of) youthfulness.
Definitions and examples
• Simile is to compare one thing with another.
Example: The eagle is “like a thunderbolt.”
• Metaphor is to say one thing is another.
• Example: The sea is “wrinkled”, making it an