Allusion in The Chambered Nautilus
Classical Allusions: Most of Holmes’s allusions refer to the realm of Greek mythology. The sirens play an important part as the imagined cause of the nautilus’s shipwreck and subsequent death. Holmes also alludes to Triton, whose trumpet-like conch-shell horn pales in comparison to the nautilus shell as it delivers its message in the final stanza. The poem also contains a veiled allusion to the biblical Gospel of John, repurposing the metaphor of “mansions” attributed to Jesus.