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How do you think that "The Happy Prince" is a representation of the Victorian age in which the writer lived?

"The Happy Prince" represents the wide gap between the rich and poor in the Victorian age, as well as the unawareness of suffering in which many of the rich lived. It also expresses the Victorian idea that sentimentality, which is deep feeling, would motivate people to help the poor once they became aware of their suffering.

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In "The Happy Prince," a prince is so sheltered from any awareness of the poverty in which his subjects live that he has a happy and carefree life. After death, however, he is turned into a gold-plated statue with jeweled eyes and placed in the center of the city. Now he sees the poverty that was hidden from him in life and is anguished over it.

The prince's state accurately describes how many of the wealthy lived in the Victorian age—removed from reality with little or no awareness of the suffering of the poor. It also depicts a pre-welfare state society like Victorian England, in which only the most minimal and inadequate safety net kept people from suffering.

Also, like many Victorians, once he realizes the vast gulf between rich and poor, the prince's heart is touched, and he uses his wealth (the gold and jewels encrusting him) to enact charity, in his case through the Swallow.

This shows, as Wilde writes in his essay "The Soul of Man Under Socialism," that good-hearted people, once...

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mehr | Student

 How do you think that " "The Happy Prince" is a representatie of the Victorian Age in which the writer lived?

epollock | Student

In the last two lines of this famous story by Oscar Wilde:

‘Bring me the two most precious things in the city,’ said God to one of His Angels; and the Angel brought Him the leaden heart and the dead bird.

‘You have rightly chosen,’ said God, ‘for in my garden of Paradise this little bird shall sing for evermore, and in my city of gold the Happy Prince shall praise me.’

A swallow who had died, and a Prince who was a statue, go to heaven to live on in forever.

The Victorian Age was an age of prosperity, and the Prince uses his jewels to make people prosperous. It is also a tale of friendship between a statue and a swallow in which two unlikely things can create bonds.

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