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The last stanza of the "The Tyger" is almost identical to the first. What is the...

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daliab | Student, Grade 11 | eNoter

Posted March 19, 2011 at 9:35 PM via web

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The last stanza of the "The Tyger" is almost identical to the first. What is the significance of the one word changed in the last stanza?

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lmetcalf | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted March 20, 2011 at 12:40 AM (Answer #1)

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In the first stanza, the speaker is asking if something could be done, and in the last stanza the speaker is elevating that if to a who would dare tostatement.  There is more fear and emotional weight in the last stanza than in the first.  Blake has built the poem up to this final line.  The poem is filled with very fearful images of the power of this tyger who has burning eyes like fire and who has dread hands and dread feet which can hammer, chain, smash and grasp its prey.  The ultimate question of the poem comes in the 5th stanza when the speaker asks, "Did he smile his work to see? / Did he who made the Lamb make thee?"  This poem is asking if the immortal hand that created the fierce tyger is pleased with his work and is it the same immortal hand that created an opposite creature like the Lamb.  This poem, and its opposite poem, "The Lamb" both come from Blakes Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience.  These collections of poems explore the innocence of the world or the experience of the world.  The innocent poems suggest optimism, hope, faith, and simplicity.  The experience poems suggest pessimism, fear, and harsh reality.  There are sweet things in this world, like Lambs (suggestive of  faith in Jesus Christ) and there are animals to be feared, like the tyger, used metaphorically to suggest a harsher world of experience. 

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