Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry: Explained, THE LORD OF THOULOUSE; A LEGEND OF LANGUEDOC, by RICHARD HARRIS BARHAM



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Classic and Contemporary Poetry: Explained

THE LORD OF THOULOUSE; A LEGEND OF LANGUEDOC, by                 Poet's Biography

 

"The Lord of Toulouse; A Legend of Languedoc" is a narrative poem by Richard Harris Barham, an English author and poet. The poem was published as part of Barham's collection of humorous and satirical poems titled "The Ingoldsby Legends" in 1840.

Explanation:

"The Lord of Toulouse; A Legend of Languedoc" is a narrative poem that tells the story of the Lord of Toulouse, a wealthy and powerful man who is haunted by the ghost of his brother. The poem is set in the region of Languedoc in southern France and is told in a mock-medieval style.

In the poem, the Lord of Toulouse is plagued by guilt over his treatment of his brother and seeks redemption by going on a pilgrimage to the holy city of Jerusalem. Along the way, he is attacked by bandits and left for dead. However, he is saved by a group of monks who nurse him back to health.

Barham's language is rich and poetic, with vivid imagery used to convey the medieval setting and the horror and suspense of the story. The poem is a celebration of Gothic literature, with all of the classic tropes of the genre present, including ghosts, haunted houses, and supernatural powers.

Poetic Elements:

  • Form: The poem consists of 15 stanzas with varying numbers of lines. The rhyme scheme is ABAB.
  • Imagery: Barham uses vivid imagery throughout the poem to create a fantastical and medieval atmosphere. Examples include "the castle's ancient tower," "the banner with its blazoned crest," and "the ghostly form that stalks."
  • Alliteration: The poem features alliteration, with repeated consonant sounds creating a musical effect. Examples include "the tramp of the trooper," "the banners that fluttered and flew," and "the ghastly glare of the ghost."
  • Gothic Tropes: The poem is a celebration of Gothic literature, with all of the classic tropes of the genre present, including ghosts, haunted houses, and supernatural powers.

Summary:

"The Lord of Toulouse; A Legend of Languedoc" is a narrative poem that tells the story of the Lord of Toulouse, a wealthy and powerful man who is haunted by the ghost of his brother. Barham's language is rich and poetic, with vivid imagery used to convey the medieval setting and the horror and suspense of the story. The poem is a celebration of Gothic literature, with all of the classic tropes of the genre present, including ghosts, haunted houses, and supernatural powers. The poem is a reminder of the enduring power of the horror genre to thrill and entertain readers.


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