'The Wreck Of The Deutschland' by Gerard Manley Hopkins
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happy memory of five Franciscan Nuns
exiles by the Falk Laws
drowned between midnight and morning of
Dec. 7th. 1875
Editor 1 Interpretation
The Wreck Of The Deutschland by Gerard Manley Hopkins: A Masterpiece of Emotional Poetry
The Wreck Of The Deutschland is a powerful and haunting poem written by Gerard Manley Hopkins in 1875. This masterpiece of emotional poetry is a tribute to the nuns who died in the wreck of the Deutschland, a German ship that sank off the coast of England in December 1875.
Hopkins, a Jesuit priest and poet, was deeply moved by the tragedy and the courage of the nuns who died. In this poem, he expresses his profound grief and admiration for these women, and his belief in the power of faith and redemption.
A Spiritual Journey of Grief and Redemption
The Wreck Of The Deutschland is a deeply spiritual poem that reflects Hopkins' faith and his belief in the power of God's grace. The poem is divided into five parts, each of which represents a different stage in Hopkins' spiritual journey of grief and redemption.
The first part of the poem is a vivid description of the storm that caused the wreck of the Deutschland. Hopkins' use of language is powerful and evocative, and he creates a vivid image of the ship and the storm.
The second part of the poem is a tribute to the nuns who died in the wreck. Hopkins describes them as "five! Old Hundred / folded! And not a filly's tail / nor mountainous prance of a lion in her / could fright those milky mares / mantled with violet pale."
Hopkins' use of imagery is striking, and he creates a powerful image of the nuns as strong and courageous women. He also expresses his admiration for their faith and their willingness to die for their beliefs.
The third part of the poem is a reflection on the nature of suffering and the role of God in our lives. Hopkins asks the rhetorical question, "Why should any heart forgo / martyrdom?" He goes on to explore the idea that suffering is a necessary part of our spiritual journey, and that God uses our suffering to bring us closer to Him.
The fourth part of the poem is a powerful expression of Hopkins' belief in the power of God's grace. He writes, "O Christ, Christ, come quickly / and quietly as lightning falls on water: / come as the heart glows, / come as the rose is radiant."
Hopkins' use of language is beautiful and poetic, and he creates a powerful image of the power of God's grace to heal and redeem us.
The fifth and final part of the poem is a triumphant expression of Hopkins' faith in the power of God's love. He writes, "Let him easter in us, be a dayspring to the dimness of us, be a crimson-cresseted east."
Hopkins' use of language is once again powerful and evocative, and he creates a beautiful image of the resurrection and the power of God's love to transform us.
A Poetic Masterpiece
The Wreck Of The Deutschland is a poetic masterpiece that showcases Hopkins' unique style and his mastery of language. Hopkins' use of language is striking, and he creates a powerful and evocative image of the storm, the ship, and the nuns who died.
One of the most striking features of the poem is Hopkins' use of sound and rhythm. Hopkins uses alliteration, assonance, and internal rhyme to create a musical and rhythmic poem that is beautiful to read and hear.
Hopkins' use of language is also deeply emotional and evocative. He creates a powerful image of the nuns as strong and courageous women, and he expresses his grief and admiration for them in a way that is both moving and inspiring.
The Wreck Of The Deutschland is a powerful and haunting poem that showcases Hopkins' unique style and his mastery of language. This masterpiece of emotional poetry is a tribute to the nuns who died in the wreck of the Deutschland, and a testament to Hopkins' faith in the power of God's grace and love.
Hopkins' use of language is beautiful and poetic, and he creates a powerful and evocative image of the storm, the ship, and the nuns who died. His use of sound and rhythm is also striking, and he creates a musical and rhythmic poem that is beautiful to read and hear.
Overall, The Wreck Of The Deutschland is a work of art that has stood the test of time, and continues to inspire and move readers today.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
The Wreck of the Deutschland: A Masterpiece of Religious Poetry
Gerard Manley Hopkins, one of the greatest poets of the Victorian era, wrote The Wreck of the Deutschland in 1875, just a year after he was ordained as a Jesuit priest. The poem, which tells the tragic story of a shipwreck off the coast of England in 1875, is not only a powerful narrative of human suffering and divine mercy but also a profound meditation on the mystery of God's providence and the paradox of faith.
At the heart of the poem is the figure of the "Maiden," a young nun named Sister Franciska who was among the passengers on the ill-fated ship. Hopkins portrays her as a symbol of innocence and holiness, a "little maid" who "loved God" and "served Him well." Her death, along with those of her fellow passengers, is depicted as a sacrifice that brings them closer to God and inspires others to follow their example.
The poem is structured in five parts, each of which has its own distinctive tone and theme. The first part sets the scene of the stormy night when the ship was wrecked and introduces the characters of the Maiden and the Captain. Hopkins uses vivid and musical language to create a sense of the elemental forces of nature and the terror of the sailors as they struggle to save themselves. The Maiden is described as a "rose" among the thorns of the sailors, a delicate and pure soul who is nevertheless brave and steadfast in the face of danger.
The second part shifts the focus to the aftermath of the wreck and the search for survivors. Hopkins uses a series of vivid images to convey the horror and chaos of the scene, from the "blackness and snow" of the sea to the "shrieks and groans" of the dying. The Maiden is depicted as a "lamb" among the wolves of the sailors, a helpless victim of the storm who nevertheless inspires them with her faith and courage.
The third part introduces the theme of divine mercy and the paradox of suffering. Hopkins portrays the Maiden as a Christ-like figure who willingly accepts her fate and offers her suffering as a sacrifice for the salvation of others. He uses a series of powerful images to convey the idea that suffering can be redemptive, that it can bring us closer to God and purify our souls. The Maiden is described as a "diamond" that is polished by the storm, a "soul" that is purified by fire.
The fourth part is a hymn of praise to God's providence and the mystery of His ways. Hopkins uses a series of complex and allusive images to convey the idea that God's plan is inscrutable and that we must trust in His wisdom and love. The Maiden is depicted as a "star" that shines in the darkness, a beacon of hope and faith for those who are lost and despairing.
The final part is a prayer for the souls of the dead and a call to all Christians to follow the example of the Maiden and the other passengers. Hopkins uses a series of powerful and emotional images to convey the idea that death is not the end but a passage to eternal life. The Maiden is depicted as a "rose" that blooms in heaven, a symbol of the beauty and joy that await us in the afterlife.
Overall, The Wreck of the Deutschland is a masterpiece of religious poetry that combines a powerful narrative with profound theological insights. Hopkins uses a rich and complex language to convey the mystery of God's love and the paradox of faith. The Maiden, as a symbol of innocence and holiness, is a powerful and inspiring figure who challenges us to live our lives with courage and faith, even in the face of suffering and death. The poem is a testament to the enduring power of religious poetry to inspire and console us in our darkest moments.
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