Study Guide

In Memoriam A.H.H. Allusions

By Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Allusions

Literary and Philosophical References:

  • Son of God (all over the place, starting at 1): Jesus (also conflated with God—as in the concept of the Trinity—several times)
  • Changeling (344): fairy child that has been left in place of a human one
  • Pan (496): not Peter Pan, but the Greek god of shepherds, the wilderness, and rustic music
  • Paradise (514, 2784): Biblical Paradise, or Heaven
  • Seraphic (631, 2337): like a Seraph, a type of angel in the Bible
  • Lazarus (637): Biblical figure who Jesus resurrected from the dead
  • Mary (638): not the mother of Jesus, but Mary of Bethany, the sister of Lazarus
  • Evangelist (652): John, who is the reputed author of one of the four Gospels in the New Testament
  • Æonian (711, 1961): relating to Aonia, region in Greece sacred to the Muses
  • Satyr (722)
  • Urania (741): Muse of astronomy in Greek mythology
  • Melpomene (749): Muse of singing and tragedy in Greek mythology
  • Muse (753, 1125, 1637, 2336)
  • Unity of place (847): one of the three unities from the Poetics of Aristotle
  • Lethean (882): relating to Lethe, river of the Underworld in Greek mythology, said to cause forgetfulness when dead souls passed over
  • Fury (976): goddesses of vengeance in Greek mythology
  • Hell (1032, 2685)
  • Shakespeare (1172)
  • Eden (1770, 2780)
  • Tuscan poets (1804)
  • Anakim (2195): a race of giants mentioned in the Hebrew Bible
  • Titans (2196)
  • Pallas (2448): Athena, Greek goddess of wisdom, who sprang fully-formed from the head of Zeus
  • Paul (2556): Biblical author

Historical References

  • Arthur (203, 217, 1486, 1786): Arthur Henry Hallam, a friend of Tennyson's who died at the young age of 22
  • Phosphor (210, 2573, 2581): the morning star (actually Venus when seen in the morning)
  • Danube (401, 2053)
  • Severn (401, 405): longest river in England
  • Wye (407, 409): river in England
  • Argive (506): relating to Argos, a major port city in ancient Greece
  • Arcady (508): remote area in Greece, often likened to a pastoral paradise
  • Olivet (648): the Mount of Olives, a ridge of mountains east of Jerusalem
  • Parnassus (746): mountain in Greece that was said to be the home of the Muses
  • Michael Angelo (1748): the famous sculptor and painter
  • Sinai (2006): Mount Sinai, a significant location for Judaism, Christianity, and Islam as the site where Moses received the Ten Commandments
  • Rhine (2045): second-longest river in Europe
  • Hesper (2565, 2581): Hesperus, or the evening star (actually Venus when seen at night)
  • Seine (2675): river that runs through Paris
  • Æon (2684): another name for Uranus