Describe the surroundings of the castle of The Lady of Shallot.

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pmiranda2857 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The surroundings of the tower where The Lady of Shallot is housed is full of life.

"The imagery here is of nature, of freedom, of movement. This is contrasted with the inflexible, colorless walls and towers of Camelot in line 15. The flowers in the next line are not described by their colors or even by their motion in the breeze, but are "overlooked" by the grey walls, as if they are held prisoner."

"In the fourth stanza of Section I, the imagery changes from relying on the senses of sight and touch (as implied by the plants' motions in the wind in stanza 2) to the sense of sound."

"Winding down to Camelot:  There the river eddy whirls, And there the curly village-churls,
Sometimes a troop of damsels glad,
An abbot on an ambling pad,
Sometimes a curly shepherd-lad,
Or long-haired page in crimson clad,
            Goes by to towered Camelot;
And sometimes through the mirror blue
The knights come riding two and two:
She hath no loyal knight and true,
            The Lady of Shalott. (Tennyson)

It is because of all the activity that goes on outside the walls of her prison that encourages The Lady of Shallot to leave the tower and to journey toward Camelot.  One day she hears Sir Lancelot singing, and also sees him in her mirror, she sees his sparkling armour and hears his voice and falls in love with him.