The Solitary Reaper Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 16 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Solitary Reaper.
This section contains 259 words
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The Solitary Reaper Summary & Study Guide Description

The Solitary Reaper Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz on The Solitary Reaper by William Wordsworth.

The version of the poem used to create this study guide appears in: Applebaum, Stanley, editor. English Romantic Poetry: An Anthology. Dover Publications, Inc., 1996. Parenthetical citations within the guide refer to the lines of the poem from which the quotations are taken.

"The Solitary Reaper" is a lyric ballad written by the English Romantic poet William Wordsworth. The work was originally published in the collection Poems, in Two Volumes in 1807, though it was allegedly inspired by a trip the poet took to Scotland in 1803. The poem describes the experience of an individual journeying through the Scottish Highlands and unexpectedly coming across a maiden reaping in the field and singing to herself. The journeyer becomes enraptured by the reaper's song, in spite of the fact that he cannot understand her song because the words are in Scots Gaelic, a language foreign to the traveler. The traveler spends the majority of the poem praising the song for its melancholy quality and making guesses as to its possible meaning. The song has such a powerful impact on the traveler that even long after this encounter with the maiden, they continue to hold its melody in their heart.

The poem is a prime example of Wordsworth's interest in nature and beauty, as well as the use of the imagination to fill in the blanks of experience. Its 32 lines, divided into four separate octets, maintain a relatively consistent rhyme scheme and meter throughout, giving the piece an overall musical quality, not unlike that of the reaper's song described within it.

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This section contains 259 words
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