Composed Upon Westminster Bridge, September 3, 1802 Themes & Motifs

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Urban Beauty

In something of a departure from his Romantic leanings, Wordsworth uses both his speaker and powerful imagery in order to express the beauty that can be found in the urban landscape.

To begin with, the speaker uses generally positive imagery to describe the city of London. For example, in the first line they refer to the vision of the city as “fair,” later commenting on how touching its “majesty” is (1, 3). They then describe the city as being wrapped up in “the beauty of the morning,” instilling it with a sense of grace and tranquility (5). As for the various landmarks of the urban landscape, such as the “towers, domes, theatres, and temples,” the speaker views them as “bright and glittering,” giving them an almost heavenly glow (8). These consistently positive descriptions and depictions of the city establish the overall quality of aesthetic beauty that speaker finds in...

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