My Last Duchess Questions and Answers
by Robert Browning

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Where is dramatic irony presented in "My Last Duchess"?

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Arguably, the greatest moment of dramatic irony in this poem occurs at the end, when the reader realizes that the person to whom the Duke is speaking has been sent to approve a marriage contract between the Duke and his master's daughter. Once the reader is armed with this knowledge, they are able to interpret the Duke's preceding dramatic monologue in a very different way indeed. We can determine, as readers, that the Duke probably wants to make a good impression upon the man whose daughter he wishes to marry; he believes that the gift he can offer, of a "nine-hundred-years-old name," justifies any and all behavior on his part. He feels that any woman should be happy to have been allowed to marry him.

However, we can interpret that the listening man in the poem probably does not view the Duke as justified in his behavior at all. On the contrary, the Duke has just described the woman in the portrait as a kind and gentle person who liked everyone, while at the same time behaving as if this...

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sunillkollam | Student

"My Last Duchess" is a popular dramatic monologue of Browning. 'Dramatic irony' is a device occuring in a drama when a character on the stage is unaware of a fact which the audience know and understand. When the Duke speaks about his 'last' Duchess his character is well revealed through his words. His possessiveness of love made him to abolish his last duchess. He never wants a duchess who is every body's moon. Even the meanial gift from the menial man makes flushes in her cheeks that is untolerable for him. So he finished her laughter. It is also a warning to his proposed Duchess.