I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud

by William Wordsworth

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What are the human attributes which have been given to the daffodils in the poem "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud"?

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In "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud," the poet gives to the daffodils human attributes having to do with dancing. He writes that they dance in the breeze, toss their heads as dancers do, and even feel gleefulness and jocundity.

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In the poem "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" by William Wordsworth, the human attributes that the poet gives to the daffodils have to do with dancing. The speaker is out walking, and he suddenly comes across a multitude of "golden daffodils" beneath some trees by a lake. Their elegant movements immediately attract him, and he compares them to humans dancing.

In the first stanza, the reference is subtle. He describes the daffodils as "fluttering and dancing in the breeze." In the second stanza, Wordsworth gives them more humanlike qualities, writing that they are "tossing their heads in sprightly dance." This is a more obvious example of personification, or giving human qualities to nonhuman objects. Flowers don't really have heads, but because of the comparison Wordsworth makes, readers can picture the daffodils as if they were human dancers moving their heads as they dance with great enjoyment.

In the third stanza, Wordsworth continues the analogy of dancing, but besides the movements of the daffodils, he ascribes to them the emotions of "glee" and being "jocund," which means to be full of high spirits and joy.

At the end of the third stanza, the speaker points out that he does not realize while he is watching the dancing daffodils the greater pleasures that they will later give him. In the fourth stanza he clarifies this thought. When he is at home on his couch, he remembers the daffodils and how they danced, and this memory causes his heart to dance as well.

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