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Who was Proteus and Triton as referred in Wordsworth's "The World Is Too Much With Us"?
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High School Teacher
The allusions to Greek mythology that are made in the last two lines of this wonderful poem mention these two important deities as the speaker declares he would rather be a pagan than cut off from nature and man's relationship to his natural surroundings. Consider what the last two lines say:
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.
Proteus in Greek mythology was a sea god who could change his shape at will, giving rise to the adjective "protean," and Triton is a sea god who controls the waves by blowing a conch shell, his "wreathed horn" as the poem describes it. Both allusions function as examples of pagan religion and how they prized nature as a powerful force to be reckoned with that mankind needed to respond to and have a relationship with. This of course stands in conflict with the damaging impact of materialism that is described in the first few lines of the poem.
Posted by accessteacher on November 6, 2011 at 7:44 PM (Answer #1)
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