11

To approach this question, it's worth looking at the entirety of the passage that precedes it: The stolen and perverted writings of Homer and Ovid, of Plato and Cicero, which all men ought to contemn, are set up by artifice against the Sublime of the Bible; but when the New Age is at leisure to pronounce, all will be set right, and those grand works of ...


10

This answer is somewhat of a generalization of my self answer to Why did the stars throw down their spears? where I ended up analyzing most of the poem to explain the meaning of one particular, mystifying line. It's all based on my own reading and my meager knowledge of Blake's philosophy. The most obvious deeper meaning in "The Tyger" is how, in ...


8

One approach to interpreting these lines is to read them semi-literally: the tiger is such a fearsome creature that even the stars themselves threw down their weapons rather than face it, and wept at its power. Stanzas 2–4 use the conceit of describing the tiger's making as the construction of a machine of war: something mechanical, unfeeling, cruel ...


7

"Genius" in the classical sense means "spirit". It's distantly related to the word genesis, meaning "birth", as well as to words like genus "kind", genre, and gender. Another related term you might here is genius loci, a protective spirit of a place. It's a little hard to wrap all of those terms into one concept, but you can see where it's going. They're ...


7

The perceived "banality" in relation to Innocence & Experience may be regarded as a device. In fact, the poems are all quite profound, but structured in a way as to be suitable for children as well as adults. A clue to the meaning can be found in Blake's ideas on the nature of the universe, which involves creative and destructive forces. "One Law ...


7

There is no one answer: a key part of this poem's appeal is its ambiguity. On the surface, it seems a poetic description of a rose flower sickening and dying due to a parasitic infection. However, the opening lines make it clear it should not be read literally: no "worm" is "invisible", nor does it "fly". So how can we interpret the metaphor? First, what ...


7

Executive summary: the sparrow is the lover, and the robin is the child [thank you @PeterShor for cutting through the undergrowth]. Which might well invalidate my interpretation below :o) Why a robin? If you go here you'll find a link to a sample of robin birdsong, with the narration [emphasis mine]: Unusually among British birds, both male and female ...


6

‘The Tyger’ contains a series of rhetorical questions, which we understand to be about the nature of the creator of the Tyger. The first questions are given in conventional English syntax: What immortal hand or eye, Could frame thy fearful symmetry? In what distant deeps or skies Burnt the fire of thine eyes? On what wings dare he aspire? But ...


6

There's a substantial body of evidence that the title "Songs of Innocence" points to the fact that the poems were intended to be sung. In the article William Blake and the Music of the Songs, Kevin Hutchins outlines several pieces of evidence for this: The romantic period sought to draw on the historic connection between music and poetry. As Hutchins ...


5

Let's start by listing the titles of all the Songs, and noting that you can read them in full here. I'll now discuss various possible pairings among these poems, but bear in mind that there's no definitive answer to this. Arguments could be made for many different ways of pairing up, and we're never going to have a perfect bijection. It's almost an exercise ...


5

There are actually two "Chimney Sweeper" poems: one in Innocence and one in Experience. You can see them both in the full text of Songs of Innocence and of Experience, by Ctrl+F'ing for "chimney". The Innocence one which you're asking about runs as follows: When my mother died I was very young, And my father sold me while yet my tongue Could scarcely ...


4

the title “Holy Thursday” implies a religious context, making ["Blake appeals to his readers' faith"] also correct. That sentence from the textbook betrays a remarkable lack of understanding of poetry and of Blake's poetry in particular. Just because the title refers to a religious date, doesn't at all mean the author is appealing to his readers' faith. I ...


3

The original punctuation of the poem seems to be: I wander thro' each charter'd street, Near where the charter'd Thames does flow, And mark in every face I meet Marks of weakness, marks of woe, In every cry of every Man, In every Infants cry of fear, In every voice: in every ban, The mind-forg'd manacles I hear How the Chimney-...


3

This sense of mark (to take note of) is found here¹: Notice or pay careful attention to. ‘he'll leave you, you mark my words!’ It doesn’t look like it’s intended to refer to a name, just a simple word play (you could just about get away with using spot instead, since that also has meanings which include notice and stain). ¹ Oxford Living Dictionaries


3

Blake's poems are cryptic and invite multiple interpretations. To my amazement, while researching this question I found that the 26 stanzas of these two poems inspired, among other things, an academic paper that runs to 154 pages! So, as you might expect, there are a lot of theories. Most of them relate in some way to Greek mythology, which is a continuing ...


3

In some ways, you're right - it'd kinda fit in both. That said, chimney sweeps were mainly children, because, well, they were small enough to fit in the chimneys and not get stuck. They were also easily replaceable. That said, I think this poem fits in Songs of Innocence more than Songs of Experience because it's all about that loss of innocence. Children ...


3

My sense is that Blake is talking about ownership, and the idea that the natural rights of people to the land and its resources is restricted by the artificial laws of man. Charter (noun) formal written instrument bestowing privileges and rights, serving as legal evidence of them," c. 1200, from Old French chartre (12c.) "charter, letter, document, ...


2

I agree with @verbose, there is no reason to assume Blake didn't mean mills or factories when he said Mills. If drawing a parallel to churches does exist it is fairly subtle. Here's another way to look at this. Good poetry is evocative. Imagine you are Blake writing contemporaneously. You are probably smart enough to draw parallels between churches and ...


2

I have never met Sherri Poterfield so obviously I can only speculate on why she made this choice. But that I will do! The Poterfield's melody begins with a musical structure that is called a "Satz" (or sentence). A Satz consists of two halves: the presentation and the continuation. The presentation has two halves: first comes an "idea", or a motif (musical ...


2

According to W. H. Stevenson's edition of Blake's complete poems (in the series Longman Annotated English Poets), the original phrase was "german-forged manacles", "suggesting the strength of skilled workmanship" (Stevenson, p. 220). By contrast, "mind-forged", according to Stevenson, [emphasizes] that the fetters are not inevitable, but created in the ...


1

William Blake was a Christian and so he is therefore using biblical symbolism. The rose symbolizes a Christian, specifically the Rose of Sharon, aka, the Lily of the Valley, in the Song of Solomon.(Somg of Solomon 2:1-3). (Incidentally, all of humanity is symbolically a woman, as those joined to Christ, are represented as chaste virgins, waiting to be wedded ...


1

Poetically, metrically, the line as Blake wrote it is trochaic tetrameter with a catalexis (missing syllable). Brightly makes it trochaic tetrameter, but ruins the line.


1

In W. H. Stevenson's edition of Blake's poems, the editor explains that the charters (see the definition in DukeZhou's answer) used to represent a source of freedom. One of the charters that are relevant to London is the charter that William the Conqueror granted to the city in 1067, "which upheld previous Saxon rights, privileges and laws" (Wikipedia: ...


1

This almost certainly has to do with the technology of printing, and the economics of publishing. There are currently many modern editions of Blake's illuminated works, and they contain much detail and many colors. To the best of my knowledge, the printing technology for mass reproduction of complex color images wasn't readily available: Alois Senefelder, ...


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