Study Guide

In Memoriam A.H.H. Canto 100

By Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Canto 100

Lines 2097-2116

I climb the hill: from end to end
   Of all the landscape underneath,
   I find no place that does not breathe
Some gracious memory of my friend;

No gray old grange, or lonely fold,
   Or low morass and whispering reed,
  Or simple stile from mead to mead,
Or sheepwalk up the windy wold;

Nor hoary knoll of ash and hew
   That hears the latest linnet trill,
   Nor quarry trench'd along the hill
And haunted by the wrangling daw;

Nor runlet tinkling from the rock;
   Nor pastoral rivulet that swerves
   To left and right thro' meadowy curves,
That feed the mothers of the flock;

But each has pleased a kindred eye,
   And each reflects a kindlier day;
   And, leaving these, to pass away,
I think once more he seems to die.

  • As the speaker walks through the land, the landscape reflects memories of when he walked in the same areas with his friend. Tennyson sees Arthur reflected in nature all around him.
  • And some of the imagery here at first glance seems like it has the potential to be depressing. The "gray old grange"? The "lonely fold"? The idea of wind and the "hoary knoll of ash"? (By the by: "hoary" means grey or white, because of age.)
  • While the idea that things are old and wasting away might not initially seem like a very happy image, Tenny takes comfort in these sights because he once looked at them with Arthur, the "kindred eye" in the last verse.
  • This upswing in mood doesn't last very long, though. When he leaves this landscape, it seems like he's experiencing the death of his friend all over again.