Thou stillunravish’dbride of quietness,
Cause/Effect:The passagegives human quality to the urn such as making the urn a “bride of quietness”. However, as the “bride” is “unravish’d”,assumably, the urn is innocent and shy (quietness).Maybe the speaker alludes to the frozen picture of theurn?(quietness)
Interpretation: If something isunravish’dand quiet, it means that the object obtains a lot of history in it. Thus, the urn is archaic object.
Thou foster-child of silence and slow time,
Cause/Effect:The urnis describedasa “foster-child”. Itwas grownby silence and slow time. Here, the author conveys an ancient ambience of the urn, making the urn mysterious due to “silence” (depiction of the urn) that the urn contains. If something is ancient, people needs to research more on the ancient object to find out what it is.
Interpretation: The urn contains a lot of story by the look of the depictions onurn,however, the urn is frozen so it cannot tell us the story (silence)
Sylvan historian, who canst thus express
A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme:
Cause/Effect: The speaker admires the urn as if it is godlike. Its expression is more than how we could express something.
Interpretation:The speaker is telling the surroundings in the depiction “sylvan historian”. The depictions are so magnificent that the speakerdoesn’tknow how to express its appearance.
What leaf-fring’dlegend haunts about thy shape
Of deities or mortals, or of both,
In Tempe or the dales of Arcady?
Cause/Effect: The speaker conveys a confused tone by establishing question marks at the end of the lines.The characters in the depictions acquires mysterious attributes. The poem gets intensive and the reader gets curious about the characters.
Interpretation: The speaker is describing a specific part of a depiction, however, he is also confused andcouldn’tcertain if the “legend” is a deity or mortal and its habitat.
What men or gods are these? What maidens loth?
What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape?
What pipes andtimbrels? What wild ecstasy?
Cause/Effect:The speaker creates a wild and extreme tone to the poem.Idon’tknow the effect here I think it is just describing thedepiction?
Interpretation: Men or gods are chasing the maidens. The maidens are “loth” which means reluctant. If men or gods are chasing reluctant women, it means that they are doing something wrong. However, there are songs playing and the scene is ecstatic. The women seemingly enjoys the chase.
Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard
Are sweeter; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on;
Cause/Effect:The speaker is using comparison in these lines. He asserts that unheard melodies prevails heard melodies. Can unheard melodies even exist if melodies are sound yet it is unheard?
Interpretation: Sometimes, imaginary sounds and object can be more pleasant to us. As an example, we imagine dating with a girl – which is common but for me, it is a wish thatcan hardly be accomplished. However, imagine dating a beautiful girl like celebrity or Jacinth^_^ -an impossible wishbuta delicate imagination experience.
Not to the sensual ear, but, moreendear’d,
Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone:
Cause/Effect: The speaker elaborates on the preceding lines of the “Unheard melodies”.However, the explanation is ambiguous because the speaker associates the “unheard melodies” to “spirit ditties of no tone”. He also alludes to imaginary world, getting the clues from “spirit”, “unheard”, and “no tone”. Nonetheless, how can “ditties” have “no tone”? Song with a no tone..Interesting
Interpretation:The speaker again alludes to the imaginary sound or world. The interpretation will be same as “unheard melodies”.
Fair youth, beneath the trees, thou canst not leave
Thy song, nor ever can those trees be bare;
Cause/Effect: The speaker evokes the eternal nature of the urn. This description makes the urn beautiful – frozen in time but the depictions are admirable.
Interpretation: Trees can never be bare..Leaves aren’t going to fall which means there is one season in the depiction which will never change – eternal nature of the urn
Bold Lover, never, never canst thou kiss,
Though winning near the goal yet, do not grieve;
She cannot fade, though thou hast not thy bliss,
For everwilt thou love, and she be fair!
Cause/Effect: The speaker creates the earnest emotion in the poem by suggesting two characters: man and woman. The man wants the woman butcan’tbecause the depictions of the urn can’t move.
Interpretation: Sometimes, dreams and goals are impossible in reality. I think the speaker is upset with his ability to write poem that lacks ability to express an object “flowery talemore sweeterthan our rhyme”.
Ah, happy, happy boughs!thatcannot shed
Your leaves, nor ever bid theSpringadieu;
And, happy melodist, unwearied,
For everpiping songs for ever new;
Cause/Effect:The speaker creates a joyous mood by using repetition of words like “happy” and “cannot ,nor”. This emphasizes the eternal nature of the urn
Interpretation: As the depictions are surrounded by nature, however frozen, the speaker is talking about the beauty of the depiction, especially eternity, thatcan’thappen in reality.
More happy love!morehappy, happy love!
For everwarm and still to beenjoy’d,
For ever panting, andfor everyoung;
Cause/Effect: The speaker continues to praise the depictions by using repetition. Some delightful words like “warm” and “panting” are used.
Interpretation: If someone is panting, he/she probably did a lot of exercise. Since the first image of the depictions is about “mad pursuit”, the men and women are enjoying the chase. “Warm” represents the sexual body contact and “panting” represents the chase between them.
All breathing human passion far above,
That leaves a heart high-sorrowful andcloy’d,
A burningforehead,and a parching tongue.
Cause/Effect: The speaker mentions the symptoms of fever. He is telling us how he feels when he look at the urn, especially the chase between the men and women. He evokes sympathy of the audience.
Interpretation: “All breathing human passion” represents the real-world people. When the real people look the urn from “far above” like Keats, they feel “high-sorrowful” of themselves – the reality that they can’t enjoy the chase like the mean and women and “cloy’d” of the depiction.
Whoare these coming to the sacrifice?
To what green altar, O mysterious priest,
Lead’stthou that heifer lowing at the skies,
Andall her silken flanks with garlandsdrest?
What little town by river orsea shore,
Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel,
Is emptiedof this folk, this pious morn?
Cause/Effect: The speaker is talking to urn, which is inanimate. He creates a “mysterious tone” as if hecan’tfigure what is happening in the depiction but also illustrates some parts of the depictions like heifer with “silken flanks with garlandsdrest”.
Interpretation: The depiction represents the religious event – a sacrifice.We can assume next lines will be about the God.
And, little town, thy streets for evermore
Will silent be; and not a soul to tell
Why thou art desolate, cane’erreturn.
Cause/Effect: The author once again establishes an eternal nature and ever-lasting question with no response of the depiction. This is a rhetoricalanswer.
Interpretation:As the event is tied with God, people wish forgood luck and response, yet the Goddoesn’tanswer or fail to success people’s wishes.
O Attic shape! Fair attitude!withbrede
Of marble men and maidens overwrought,
With forest branches and the trodden weed;
Cause/Effect: The speaker admires the shape and the appearance of the urn by using exclamation mark.
Interpretation: This is the conclusion of the speaker’s thought of the urn.
Thou, silent form, dost tease us out of thought
As doth eternity: Cold Pastoral!
Cause/Effect: The author uses comparison and contrast like the difference between “thought” (reality) and the “eternity”. He also uses juxtaposition like the word “Cold Pastoral”.
Interpretation: These lines contradictwith the previous stanza as it was admiring the urn while these linesis talking about the unrealistic views of the urn. The speaker is ambivalent about the urn.
When old age shall this generation waste,
Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thousay’st,
“Beauty is truth, truth beauty,that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.”
Cause/Effect: The speaker elevates the urn as if it was the God-like figure. The urn is giving us advice.
Interpretation: The speaker probably reflected his sorrowful life to the urn and got some inspiration to live a better life.