The Poem “Electra” by Aeschylus

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In the poem Electra, the poet has used imagery to appeal to the various senses of the readers such as taste, sight, smell, hearing, and touch. By saying that, ‘Argos, old as time…’ (10), the poet illustrates the age of Argos using the infinite nature of time appealing to the sense of hearing for the reader. By saying that ‘sunlight stirs the clear-voiced birds to morning songs,’ the poet imparts a sense of hearing to the readers. With the ‘bird whispers that accompany normal dawns,’ the poet has used imagery to illustrate the audience should plan and unite before it is too late.

In (60), the poem says,’…as some avenging stars, they will see me…’ Use of imagery illustrates how the enemies will see the main character. The sense of sight is used showing that foes have their eyes everywhere. Additionally, the use of, ‘daylight pure, bright sky…’ (90) uses appeals to sight showing how land is beautiful in the foreign land.

In (150), the poet states that the ‘bird that grieves for Itys’ uses a sense of hearing as imagery showing a mood of grief and melancholy.

An appeal to sight is used by the poet where he says, ‘I stand to eat at empty tables… (190)’, an illustration of the hopelessness the narrator has after the murder of his father. Additionally, the narrator says that ‘ruthless hands of father’s death... took away my life (200)’ giving a sense of touch and bewilderment.

In (210), the narrator states ‘madness faced with…’ combining personification of madness and imagery appealing to the sense of sight by the poet. Additionally, by saying ‘...pile grief with grief’ makes use of imagery creating a sense of touch to the readers. The line emphasizes the grief the narrator is going through after losing his father using ‘piling of grief’ as imagery.

Works Cited

Robin Bond. Seven Tragedies of Sophocles. Electra (2014)

November 24, 2023



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