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Analysis


Symbols, Imagery, Wordplay

Form and Meter

Tony StanzasThis is a pretty long poem, so maybe it makes sense to start out by looking at how it's broken up. Are you with us? Good. There are two major sections of this poem. The first part is na...

Speaker

This poem actually has a bunch of speakers. Maybe the best way to sort them out is to divide the poem into its two major parts. Ready? Okay, then…The first part is a kind of introduction—five s...

Setting

Over the 13 stanzas of this poem, we learn a lot about the setting. The opening narrator and the sailors both talk a lot about the land of the Lotos-eaters—how it looks and sounds and feels and s...

Sound Check

There's a mood that runs through the whole poem, and a particular sound that we hear over and over. It's a kind of gentle, rhythmic, drowsy sound, like a calm wind breathing through the poem. Actua...

What's Up With the Title?

The title of this poem gives us a hint about the main subject of this poem—the Lotos-eaters. But who exactly are those Lotos-eaters? Well, it could refer to the sailors, who arrive on the island...

Calling Card

Alfred, Lord Tennyson was a major public figure, a huge success, and a favorite of Queen Victoria. So, it's probably not surprising that his poems aren't too far "out there." His rhyme and meter te...

Tough-o-Meter

It might take a minute to figure out where you are when you start this poem, but once you're over that first hump, this should be a fun and easy climb.

Trivia

There's a lot of debate about what real-life plant the "Lotos" refers to. It might have been a reference to the opium poppy, which has a seed pod that looks like a lotus pod. (FYI: "Lotos" is just...

Steaminess Rating

No sex at all in this poem. There's lots of lying around under the trees on tropical beaches, but everyone seems too sleepy to have any kind of sex at all.

Allusions

The Odyssey (whole poem): As far as source material goes, it's pretty tough to get much older, more famous, or more important than Homer's Odyssey. This epic poem, written more than 2000 years ago,...
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