Questions and Answers for The Second Coming

The Second Coming

What is "gyre" in "The Second Coming"?

As part of his somewhat esoteric belief system, Yeats believed that historical change could be conceived in terms of gyres. These are historical epochs, lasting for roughly 2,000 years or so. To...

Latest answer posted January 15, 2021 10:44 am UTC

4 educator answers

The Second Coming

What is the significance of the falconer?

The falconer in "The Second Coming" is generally thought to represent Christ. The Christian historical epoch, or "gyre" as Yeats calls it, is drawing to a close. In its stead will come a new era...

Latest answer posted December 29, 2017 12:21 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What is Yeats's claim about the Second Coming?

As you might have noticed, William Butler Yeats’s poem is not replete with positive imagery or allusions. In Yeats’s poem, it seems like things are falling apart. In fact, Yeats says that in the...

Latest answer posted October 4, 2020 2:59 pm UTC

4 educator answers

The Second Coming

What is the main idea in "The Second Coming?"  

The main idea in "The Second Coming" can seem elusive, especially because the poem ends with a complicated question that takes up the last five lines of the poem. However, an understanding of W. B....

Latest answer posted January 28, 2016 11:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What drowns the "ceremony of innocence" in "The Second Coming"?

In his foreboding 1921 poem "The Second Coming," Yeats theorizes that a gentler era of history, ushered in by the birth of Jesus, is coming to an end. Instead of the second coming of Christ,...

Latest answer posted May 6, 2019 6:43 pm UTC

2 educator answers

The Second Coming

Write a critical appreciation of W. B. Yeats's poem "The Second Coming."

When one writes a critical appreciation of a poem, one should identify the poem's central purpose (its "meaning") and the devices and elements it uses in order to convey this purpose. It can also...

Latest answer posted June 21, 2019 1:38 pm UTC

2 educator answers

The Second Coming

What imagery is present in the poem "The Second Coming" by William Butler Yeats?

Two important images that occur early in William Butler Yeats’s poem concern the falcon and the gyre. The bird is in flight but separated from its handler. Later in the poem, another bird is...

Latest answer posted March 20, 2019 4:03 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Discuss the use of allusion in William Butler Yeats's “The Second Coming.”  How is it important to the development of...

Yeats's “The Second Coming” concerns the potentially bloody and disruptive transition from one historical epoch to another. Yeats believes that the Christian era is coming to a close, to be...

Latest answer posted September 17, 2020 12:11 pm UTC

4 educator answers

The Second Coming

What is the basic theme of the poem "The Second Coming"?  

In order to understand the basic theme of the poem "The Second Coming" by William Butler Yeats, it is important to put the work into historical context. Yeats wrote it in 1919, just after...

Latest answer posted July 12, 2019 2:37 pm UTC

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The Second Coming

What literary devices has Yeats used in "The Second Coming"?

Literary devices in "The Second Coming" include the following: antithesis: Antithesis is when two contrasting ideas or images are put together. A central motif of this poem is that the second...

Latest answer posted November 15, 2017 12:09 pm UTC

3 educator answers

The Second Coming

What are the main themes in Yeats's "Second Coming"?

Yeats wrote "The Second Coming" in 1919, in the wake of the cataclysm that was World War I. Additionally, Ireland, his homeland, was in the midst of a violent uprising against British rule, and the...

Latest answer posted May 5, 2017 3:35 am UTC

2 educator answers

The Second Coming

Why does William Butler Yeats end the poem "The Second Coming" in a question?

In this poem, the speaker seems to suggest that the world, after the first coming of Jesus Christ, has gone terribly wrong. "Things [have] fall[en] apart" and "anarchy" has been "loosed upon the...

Latest answer posted February 24, 2019 6:16 pm UTC

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The Second Coming

How is "The Second Coming" a prophetic poem?

William Butler Yeats penned "The Second Coming" in 1919, at the end of the First World War (the "War to End All Wars," presumably). Mechanized warfare had come into its own, and Germany was subdued...

Latest answer posted October 27, 2015 6:14 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What is the significance of the gyre in poem "The Second Coming"?

William Butler Yeats's poem "The Second Coming" can be quite confusing for readers who don't understand the poet's personal religious and philosophical leanings. Many readers familiar with...

Latest answer posted August 10, 2019 3:54 am UTC

3 educator answers

The Second Coming

Critically examine the thematic aspect of "The Second Coming" by W.B. Yeats.

The challenge in the question is that there is not merely one thematic aspect to the poem. Yeats' poem is so intricate because it represents so many different themes within it. On one hand, there...

Latest answer posted October 8, 2012 3:31 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

State the claim of William Butler Yeats about his own poem, "The Second Coming."

Yeats provided a note for his poem "The Second Coming." The first line ends with the word "gyre," and Yeats explained that word with this statement: "The end of an age, which always receives the...

Latest answer posted January 29, 2016 12:11 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Comment on the themes of Yeats's "The Second Coming."

In his pre-apocalyptic poem "The Second Coming," William Butler Yeats focuses on the menacing chaos of the present, the looming horror of the future, and his personal view of the progress of...

Latest answer posted September 1, 2019 1:59 pm UTC

3 educator answers

The Second Coming

What is the main theme of William Butler Yeats' poem "The Second Coming"?

Yeats published "The Second Coming" in 1920 as part of his larger collection Michael Robartes and the Dancer, which also included Easter, 1916," Yeats' contemplation on the results of the Easter...

Latest answer posted November 10, 2015 2:14 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What vision of future is suggested in the second half of "The Second Coming"?

The second stanza, if anything, is more bleak and uncompromising than the first and is incredible in the way that it paints a horrifying picture of the future that the speaker anticipates will...

Latest answer posted November 4, 2011 7:17 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Explain the poem "The Second Coming" in light of World War II.

I have to offer a different answer than the first one posted. Yeats does not write this poem about the Second World War. He writes the poem in 1920, when the scars of the First World War were...

Latest answer posted July 5, 2011 4:49 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What is the "vast image" he sees in "The Second Coming"?

The "vast image" that the speaker of this poem sees is described in the second stanza, and is clearly a terrifying sight for him. Now how this "image" is described: a waste of desert sand; A shape...

Latest answer posted November 25, 2013 6:03 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

How is the theme of change depicted in "The Second Coming"? What is the poet suggesting that we do for a solution?

William Butler Yeats believed that historical patterns could be conceptualized by means of gyres, large spiral shapes that emphasized the circular motion of history. Each gyre represented roughly...

Latest answer posted August 17, 2020 9:14 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Please explain this line from Yeats's "The Second Coming": "Things fall apart; the center cannot hold, mere anarchy...

William Butler Yeats's line—part of which would inspire the title of Chinua Achebe's novel Things Fall Apart—speaks to the First World War's disruption of previously held, self-evident truths....

Latest answer posted April 14, 2019 10:11 pm UTC

2 educator answers

The Second Coming

In the poem, "The Second Coming," which single word (use of diction) do you see as the most significant as to the...

From one perspective, the word "gyre" is the most significant word in William Butler Yeats's poem "Second Coming." If one chooses to interpret the poem based on the poet's deliberate choice of...

Latest answer posted May 11, 2018 1:42 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

"The falcon cannot hear the falconer" (Explanation).

William Butler Yeats’s poem “The Second Coming” opens with Turning and turning in the widening gyre The falcon cannot hear the falconer Published in 1920, this poem reflects the political and...

Latest answer posted March 12, 2020 5:33 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Summary of the second coming.

This is one of the most profound poems imaginable. It takes a great deal of patience and deliberation to explicate. However, upon doing so, I guarantee that it will be a poem whose words and...

Latest answer posted July 18, 2010 9:58 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Please give the explanation of the poem "The Second Coming" by William Butler Yeats.  

Yeats writes this poem after World War I. The conflict had left Europe completely ravaged, cut adrift from any hope. The victors were left to survey the immense loss of human life and...

Latest answer posted March 9, 2010 7:36 am UTC

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The Second Coming

How does William B. Yeats connect to Western civilization in "The Second Coming"?  

In this poem Yeats connects to both modern and ancient aspects of Western civilization. The first stanza characterizes what was happening in the West during the first years of the 20th century. The...

Latest answer posted April 16, 2016 9:11 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Discuss Yeats' use of symbolism in "The Second Coming."

I think that one can find many examples of Yeats employing symbolism throughout his work. Since the question is asking for how it is used, I would focus on the symbols present in my favorite Yeats...

Latest answer posted January 6, 2011 7:11 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Explain these lines from "The Second Coming": "The falcon cannot hear the falconer."

Falconry is a sport traditionally associated with the aristocracy. With regards to "The Second Coming," the general critical and scholarly consensus is that "the falconer" symbolizes the old social...

Latest answer posted March 12, 2020 1:01 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Is "The Second Coming" a magnificent statement about the contrary forces at work in history and about the conflict...

Written in 1919 in the aftermath of World War I and the Russian Revolution, Yeats' "The Second Coming" is about a dramatic shift in history. The first line is a geometric image of one era spinning...

Latest answer posted February 27, 2013 3:47 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

"The Second Coming" by William Butler Yeats What did the author trying to tell us and/or what is the most interesting?

One of the most interesting aspects of "The Second Coming" by W.B. Yeats is his use of dark imagery to convey the state of the world: Turning and turning in the widening gyreThe falcon cannot...

Latest answer posted January 22, 2013 5:38 am UTC

2 educator answers

The Second Coming

What are the binary oppositions in W.B.Yeats's "The Second Coming"?

Part of what makes Yeats' poem so powerful is that he plays into and yet rejects the binary opposition that is so much a part of Western intellectual currents. Had Yeats taken the traditional...

Latest answer posted December 23, 2010 11:07 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Write the themes of the poem"the second coming" in detail.

"The Second Coming" by Yeats presents a second coming of a different kind; different from the second coming Christian tradition presents. The poem presents social upheaval and nightmarish violence....

Latest answer posted April 27, 2010 10:51 pm UTC

2 educator answers

The Second Coming

What are the comparable modernistic and post modernistic elements in the second coming.?

If we agree that modernism in poetry can be characterized generally by the poet's alienation from his society, the avoidance of naturalistic representation and the use of fragmentary images, often...

Latest answer posted December 30, 2011 2:55 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

In William Butler Yeats' poem "The Second Coming," what does the poet imagine?

"The Second Coming," published in 1919 just after the end of the First World War (though the Allies and Axis powers were still negotiating the terms of Germany's surrender) is one of Yeats' most...

Latest answer posted September 22, 2012 4:07 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Who are the falcon and the falconer?

The critical consensus is that the falconer refers to the old aristocracy, society's natural rulers, and that the falcon refers to the common people—those who've traditionally taken orders from...

Latest answer posted January 30, 2020 11:02 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What is the "best" and the "worst" in the poem "The Second Coming"?

If the questioner is merely asking for an explication of the lines "The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full of passionate intensity": Yeats is referring to sides in the Irish...

Latest answer posted December 10, 2015 8:17 pm UTC

2 educator answers

The Second Coming

What are important lines from the poem "The Second Coming"? 

Every line is important in "The Second Coming," but some are more important than others. The following lines seem to be especially important in conveying Yeats' overall message: The best lack all...

Latest answer posted March 12, 2020 11:51 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Identify the reason the the falcon cannot hear the falconer. Explain how this metaphor helps to explain what is...

Falconry was a sport traditionally associated with kings and the aristocracy. It was a sport of gentlemen, not something to be associated with the common run of humanity. It's no accident, then,...

Latest answer posted November 14, 2019 8:01 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Can you please pose an argument from Yeats' "The Second Coming?"

I think that there are several points that can help to form a thesis statement from Yeats' poem. Yet, without more specificity, you will have to piece things together. I think that one potential...

Latest answer posted December 27, 2011 2:08 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Show how the poem is a comment on the weakening of Christian values.

I would say that the weakening of Christian values is present throughout the first stanza of the poem. Yeats' construction of the world is one in which the unifying principles previously held are...

Latest answer posted October 2, 2012 10:27 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What vision of the contemporary world is implied by the metaphors in the first half of "The Second Coming"?

I think by far the most profound image of the poem that it begins with is of the falcon turning and turning in an ever-widening gyre as it seeks to escape the control and influence of its...

Latest answer posted November 3, 2011 6:59 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Explain these lines from "The Second Coming" of W.B Yeats: "The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full...

William Butler Yeats was not a liberal, but in these lines, he offers a somewhat sympathetic, but peculiarly devastating, critique of liberal values. Liberalism is regarded here as a general...

Latest answer posted March 12, 2020 1:13 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

What quotes from "The Second Coming" suggest that Yeats wants to prevent change? 

There aren't really any quotes in "The Second Coming" in which Yeats directly says he wants to prevent change. However, the poem seems to fear coming change in general and so, while it would be...

Latest answer posted July 26, 2016 4:12 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Do you think that Yeats's "The Second Coming" will remain popular throughout the twenty-first century, and does the...

"The Second Coming" was written in 1919 in the aftermath of World War One. In the first stanza, the speaker describes the condition of the world as anarchic, corrupt, immoral, and hopeless, and in...

Latest answer posted March 16, 2020 9:02 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Could someone briefly explain at least two factors that influenced Yeats’ writing of “The Second Coming”?

I think that the reality that enveloped Europe after World War I represented on factor that influenced Yeats' writing. Emerging from the war, Yeats and many other thinkers were convinced that the...

Latest answer posted July 24, 2011 1:44 am UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

How does the traditional idea of the Second Coming differ from what the speaker is envisioning?

The fundamental difference in William Butler Yeats’s poem can be found in the penultimate line, where he queries the future birth of the “rough beast.” Through the first half, the speaker puts...

Latest answer posted June 30, 2019 10:24 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Don't we think it is time for WB Yeats's 'Second Coming'? What I have realised almost all the religions have lost its...

Like Yeats, we are living in a time of rapid change. Like Yeats, many of us are deeply concerned about the consequences of those changes, which are impossible for us to foresee with much certainty....

Latest answer posted November 4, 2011 10:48 pm UTC

1 educator answer

The Second Coming

Applying "The Second Coming" to the Modern Setting In rediscovering this poem, I am compelled to ask if anyone...

I think if we look at recent history this excellent poem from Yeats only seems to be more and more relevant. When I think about recent events from the last couple of decades I think of the Rwandan...

Latest answer posted March 19, 2011 4:19 am UTC

3 educator answers

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