Comparison of William Blake’s ‘London’ and William Wordsworth’s ‘Upon Westminster Bridge’.
Firstly, the structure of the poems is different. ‘Upon Westminster Bridge’ is a sonnet whereas ‘London’ is not. Wordsworth rhymes the end of the first and fourth lines and first and third, unlike Blake, who rhymes the first line with the third and the second with the fourth. Blake also uses repetition in his poem, but Wordsworth doesn’t. He repeats both ‘charter’d’ and ‘mark’ to show he wants to emphasise the points.
Secondly, although both poems are set in London, ‘Upon Westminster Bridge’ is describing London in the early morning and ‘London’ is describing the city at midnight. Both poets use the time to use pathetic fallacy. The bright, early morning reflects the happy mood of ‘Upon Westminster Bridge’, whereas the dark night reflects the solemn mood of the poem ‘London’. Wordsworth describes London from Westminster bridge, showing one view, whereas Blake describes London as he walk through the streets, having multiple views. Wordsworth mostly describes what he sees from the bridge, whereas Blake mainly describes what he hears as he walks the streets of London.
The poets have very different views of the city and express this through their poems and use of language. William Wordsworth describes London as a city that is more beautiful than his home town of the Lake District, which pleases people unlike William Blake, who only sees the bad in the city and hears the cries of the people. Wordsworth uses language such as majesty, beauty, sweet and mighty, which shows his admiration for the city and how he believes that it looks glorious in the early morning. He personifies the city by describing it as ‘wearing majesty like a garment’, which shows his view that the city is bold and brings joy to people. He then goes on to personify the city further towards the end of the poem, He says that the ‘very houses seem asleep’ and that the ‘mighty heart is lying still’ which shows he thinks the city is alive and sleeps like a person. Moreover, his description of the houses implies that the city is so quiet in the mornings that not only the people are asleep but the houses too. He describes the sky as ‘bright and glittering in the smokeless air’, which shows that he thinks the sky is beautiful in the morning and although the industrial revolution was well under way by the time Wordsworth wrote the poem, he did not think the factories were...