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Metaphor in The Lady of Shalott

Metaphor Examples in The Lady of Shalott:

Text of the Poem

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"Out flew the web ..."   (Text of the Poem)

In contrast to the “delight” in her art from the earlier parts of the poem, the Lady now cries out as her weaving is destroyed. One interpretation is that this is a metaphor for a loss of artistic inspiration resulting from emotional interference. For many Victorian authors, writing poetry was more of an intellectual pursuit than an emotional one. Tennyson himself wrote several ruminations on the conflict between aesthetic isolation and social involvement. Scholars often view “The Lady of Shalott” and “The Palace of Art,” which were both originally published in Tennyson’s 1832 collection Poems, as records of his conflicting views on the same topic.

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