The diction and images used by the speakers expresses their evil thoughts, as well as indicate their evil natures. This suggests that the real Duchess is no longer alive. The lines use enjambment which is, sentences and other grammatical units do not necessarily conclude at the end of lines. As the Duke and the emissary walk leave the painting behind, the Duke points out other notable artworks in his collection. To some extent, the duke's amorality can be understood in terms of aristocracy. The Duke tries to distract us with courtesy but even as he controls the story of his wife and her image, his emotion exceeds his control and exposes his crimes. Notice Neptune, though, Taming a sea-horse, thought a rarity, Which Claus of Innsbruck cast in bronze for me! But that is another example of his egotism.
His flowery speech confuses and disguises any possible motives, however, and the mystery is left unsolved. He says that she values her white mule, a branch of cherries, and a sunset as much as she values a peice of jewelry that he had given her. The Last Duchess is considered to be Lucrezia de Medici, wife of Alfonso. Before the poem even begins, the courtier has been escorted through the Duke's palace - probably through an art gallery filled with paintings and sculptures. However, he is too prideful to believe that others would not value such things as he does, further characterizing him as someone who is rather ignoble. In that century woman where treated differently then men. Characters also express their tastes by the manner in which they describe art, people, or landscapes.
Clearly, Browning used what Keats called negative capability to invent a character that was strikingly unlike his own: a vicious, controlling duke whose morals and beliefs contrasted with those of the poet. The possessiveness and the jealousy of the Duke as husband is revealed when he tells the listener that the smiles of the Duchess were not reserved only for her husband. This is very suspicious behaviour. Will 't please you rise? Not only was he afraid of losing her, we also get the impression that he is more concerned over his loss of control over her. She had A heart—how shall I say? The meaning of the title Right from the title, the poet offers a glimpse of the possessiveness of the Duke. Structure of the poem The poem is written in free verse.
My favour at her breast, The dropping of the daylight in the West, The bough of cherries some officious fool Broke in the orchard for her, the white mule She rode with round the terrace—all and each Would draw from her alike the approving speech, Or blush, at least. My Last Duchess Summary — Lines 16-35 Alfonso tries to explain the smile on the face of his wife with the use of imaginary claims. He points to a statue and tells his guest that it is his own statue in the form of god Neptune training the sea horse. She had A heart — how shall I say? Themes, Motifs and Symbols Themes Multiple Perspectives on Single Events The dramatic monologue verse form allowed Browning to explore and probe the minds of specific characters in specific places struggling with specific sets of circumstances. I repeat, The Count your master's known munificence Is ample warrant that no just pretence Of mine for dowry will be disallowed; Though his fair daughter's self, as I avowed At starting, is my object. The latter, based on a seventeenth-century Italian murder trial, received wide critical acclaim, finally earning a twilight of reknown and respect in Browning's career.
The style and structure of this poem play a significant role in the effect of the poem. The other characters mentioned are, Fra Pandolf, and Claus of Innsbruck. In fact, his mentioning of Ferrara in the epitaph seems as if he is enlisting the scenes of play. Like Dickens, Browning created characters who were capable of great evil. Although the duke's monologue appears on the surface to be about his late wife, a close reading will show that the mention of his last duchess is merely a side note in his self-important speech.
The Duke of Ferrara then brokered a deal with the Count of Tyrol to marry a daughter of the Holy Roman Emperor after that wife died, he married her niece. Browning forces his reader to become involved in the poem in order to understand it, and this adds to the fun of reading his work. It was the first time the world witnessed this poem and the series also contained The Pied Piper of Hamelin, another well-known poem by Robert Browning. An emissary visits the recently widowed Duke and the dramatic monologue begins. By no means can we justify the idea that the duke is willing to transcend class, but at the same time he does allow a transgression of the very hierarchy that had previously led him to have his wife murdered rather than discuss his problems with her. There she stands As if alive. Figures of speech used Simile: The first two lines of the poem in which the Duke compares his late wife to a living person is an instance of simile.
He reveals that the artist is Fra Pandolf who spent a day to complete the portrait. The murder of his own wife and the way he carelessly takes, is shocking and disgusting. Multiple perspectives illustrate the idea that no one sensibility or perspective sees the whole story and no two people see the same events in the same way. But, Alfonso creates such psychological impact with his words that one would believe that the Duchess was unfaithful. He questioned whether artists had an obligation to be moral and whether artists should pass judgment on their characters and creations.
The duke attempts to be an artist in his life, turning a walk down the hallway into a performance, but he is always hampered by the fact that the ideal that inspires his performance cannot change. A brief summary While negotiating with the emissary concerning his second marriage to Barbara, the Duke shows him a portrait of his last duchess painted by a friar named Pandolf. His choice of words reinforces one of the major themes of the poem: the way he sold himself out. Also in these lines, we are given our first hint that the duchess really not all that important to the duke; he speaks of the painting as if it was the duchess, suggesting that his late wife was nothing more than her external appearance. In fact, in societies which do injustice to women, men are usually corrupted, evil and unjust. That means he gave orders to kill her.