From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.

The Star

Symbol Analysis

The speaker actually spends a lot of time on this image. At first, it's not quite clear what we're looking at. The speaker sees a glowing object rising in the sky at the end of the trail. As the poem goes on, it becomes clear that the thing he's seeing is the planet Venus. When Venus comes up in the morning, like it's doing in this poem, it's sometimes called the "morning star."

  • Line 37: The rising star makes the speaker think of the goddess Astarte. He has all kinds of wild ideas about how she's coming to help him and his soul out, to lead them to heaven and happiness, etc. When you give human attributes to a non-human thing like a planet, that's called personification.
  • Line 52: Psyche is way less psyched about this star (sorry, that's awful). Anyway, she thinks the appearance of the planet might be a bad omen, and she tells her friend the speaker as much. Also, check out the alliteration in this line: "Said—'Sadly this star.'"
  • Line 103: One last mention of the planet before the poem is done. Here the speaker comes over to Psyche's side of the argument and agrees that maybe the planet's appearance was a bad sign. We hate to sound like a broken record, but there's more great alliteration here: "sinfully scintillant." Actually, even without the alliteration, that's just an awesome word combination.

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...