The blog intends to improve the users' knowledge of English Language as well as to give them comprehensive analysis of English Literature.

Monday, March 8, 2010

To My Dear and Loving Husband
by Anne Bradstreet ( 1612-1672)

If ever two were one, then surely we.
If ever man were loved by wife, then thee;
If ever wife was happy in a man,
Compare with me ye women if you can.
I prize thy love more that whole mines of gold,
Or all the riches that the East doth hold.
My love is such that rivers cannot quench,
Nor ought but love from thee give recompense.
Thy love is such I can no way repay,
The heavens reward thee manifold I pray.
Then while we live, in love let’s so persever,
That when we live no more, we may live ever.

The poem titled as “To my Dear Husband” gives as an account of the feelings of love narrated by a wife for her husband. At the surface level, the poem depicts typical sentiments of wives accompanied by purity and perseverance.

It is in the form of couplets with artistically embedding harmonious rhyming scheme that contributes in making it a lyrical poem or song.
The title itself suggests that the poem is about the inner feelings of a woman towards her husband.
Literary Devices

In the first couplet the device of anaphora has been applied through the repetition of “if” at the beginning of the two lines.

Comparing her feelings with the mines of gold as well as the riches of the east can be looked as an example of metaphor. It implies the speaker’s emotions are much stronger than the worldly precious ornaments and all the important things that are worthy of importance. But as far as her love is concerned she is determined to prefer that over all the other things exist in this life.
We can point out many instances of grammatical deviation; a type of deviation in which writer deviates general patterns of grammar. So in the very first line “then surely we” is a clause showing grammatical deviation. The normal sentence structure has been broken in this line, however, this deviation is for the purpose of creating aesthetic pleasure in the minds of the readers. With this the poet has also maintained lyrical composition of the poem.

The final line “That when we live no more, we may live ever” consists of a paradoxical statement which means when there is no life they will be alive for ever. In fact it tells us the intensity of the sentiments of the poet. This line marks the conclusion of the poem giving us a resolution of the tension that was raised in the beginning. Its real interpretation is that her love will remain pure not only in this world but also in the hereafter. The emotions and feelings of love are so strong that they can’t be broken off by death.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Language and Skills

A language is a means of communication between two people and it can also take place at a lager and vast scale. In fact it is encoding and decoding of messages that takes place between them. For instance speaker A encodes a message which the speaker B decodes (translates) and deciphers the real message. In this way, we can say that there must be a certain mutual understanding between the two, otherwise it may take to "linguistic gap". The linguistic gap refers to a situation in which two people can't communicate because one is using such a language that the second person can't comprehend.

There are four language-skills that are generally taught to those persons who want to learn a second or foreign language. They include reading, writing, speaking and listening. Acquiring proficiency in all the four skills is not an easy task. It requires on the part of learner an acute effort and consistent struggle after which he or she becomes able to easily communicate in the second language. In next blogs, I will discuss how can a learner acquire these skills in a fairly creditable manner.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Standard English

The standard variety of a language is used in newspapers and books etc and more significantly it is this variety which is taught to those who want to use it as a second/foreign language. Standard variety can be easily studied in the form of written language, including vocabulary, spelling and grammar.

Historically, the standard variety of English is based on the London dialect of English which developed after the Norman Conquest. The educated segment of the society preferred it in their formal communication. Apart from native speakers, the ones who speak it as their mother tongue, it was also promoted as a model for non-native speakers of English.

Today, the standard English ha been codified to such an extent that its basic grammar and vocabulary are much the same everywhere in the world. Though changes occur in the language when it is used by foreigners due to different cultural and social attitudes towards that language but still the standard language maintains its distinguished stature throughout the world.

English Language; Historic Overview

The history of English Language goes behind to the Anglo Saxon era, roughly 5th century AD. Since then we have a complete history of hoe it originated as well as how it developed. It is pertinent to mention here that the root system of every language is "poetry" and out of it different genres of literature emerge. The same is true for English as its old versions are accessible in the form of poetry.
Certain events in the world history mark various uplifts regarding the development of English language. Among many, the most important are Norman Conquest, Medieval Period, Augustus Age, Victorian Age, Romanticism etc.
What we have today in English, distinct genres with innumerable literary pieces of works, is the result of acute development the English language passed through over the period of centuries.