Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry: Explained, THE SMUGGLER'S LEAP; A LEGEND OF THANET, by RICHARD HARRIS BARHAM



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Classic and Contemporary Poetry: Explained

THE SMUGGLER'S LEAP; A LEGEND OF THANET, by                 Poet's Biography

 

"The Smuggler's Leap: A Legend of Thanet" is a poem written by Richard Harris Barham, an English cleric and writer. The poem was first published in 1837 as part of his collection "The Ingoldsby Legends," which consists of humorous and satirical poems. The poem tells the story of a group of smugglers who attempt to evade the authorities by leaping from a cliff onto a ship below.

Context:

The historical context of the poem is the 18th century in England, a time when smuggling was a prevalent activity along the coastlines. The poem reflects Barham's interest in history and folklore, while also providing insight into the social and cultural trends of the time.

Content:

The poem consists of several stanzas, each containing four lines. The speaker tells the story of a group of smugglers who are attempting to evade the authorities by leaping from a cliff onto a ship below. The poem is structured around the central narrative of the smugglers' daring escape, which involves various humorous and suspenseful incidents. The poem is humorous and satirical, with the various characters engaging in witty banter and wordplay.

Form:

The poem is written in a simple ballad form, with a clear rhyme scheme and meter. The use of rhyme and meter contributes to the poem's musical quality and its impact, while the use of repetition and other rhetorical devices adds to its humorous and satirical atmosphere.

Poetic Elements:

The poem makes use of various poetic techniques and devices, including rhyme, meter, repetition, and imagery. The use of rhyme and meter contributes to the poem's musical quality and its impact, while the use of repetition and imagery adds to its humorous and satirical atmosphere. The poem also makes use of personification, with the ship given human-like qualities.

Summary:

"The Smuggler's Leap: A Legend of Thanet" can be seen as a valuable contribution to the genre of humorous and satirical poetry, using language and poetic techniques to create a witty and entertaining atmosphere. The poem reflects Barham's skill as a writer and his interest in history and folklore, while also providing insight into the social and cultural trends of the 18th century. The poem's simple ballad form and clever wordplay contribute to its impact and make it an enjoyable read.


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