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Study Questions

Ode on a Grecian Urn Questions

Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.

  1. Have you ever been happy enough that you felt you could live in that moment forever? If not, did this poem convince you that such moments are possible?
  2. What’s the deal with the speaker? He’s all over the place. He seems to go from curious to nostalgic to lustful to frustrated. If you had to write his fictional life story, what would it say?
  3. Why do you think the first critics of Keats’s poetry hated it so much?
  4. How would you describe the overall tone of the poem? Is it joyful or sad?
  5. Is the speaker able to identify with the Ancient Greeks depicted on the urn, or is he merely excited by the "mystery" of their culture and its foreignness. Do you feel like you can identify with life on the urn?

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