The True Victory Essay

780 words - 3 pages

The struggle to do what is right can be seen in many works of literature. In Prometheus, Lord Byron describes this struggle by retelling the tale of the mythological figure Prometheus. Byron uses literary techniques, rhyme and structure to develop his opinion on the struggle. Byron expands on the idea that working for the greater good, even if it means receiving punishment afterwards, will result in the ultimate reward. Byron is known for his use of “Byronic heroes” in his poetic works. These heroes are said to be flawed because they exhibit strength but lose something in return (Allen). In Prometheus’ case, his punishment includes his loss of freedom. Byron used these heroes to emphasize man’s futility and the need to seek help from greater powers. Prometheus is said to be a martyr for humanity for his sacrifice (Ruta).
Lord Byron’s use of literary techniques helps the reader reach an understanding of the struggle to perform good deeds when there is a possibility of punishment. His work is centered on the mythological tale of Prometheus and his use of literary devices helps emphasize the greater message Byron is trying to depict. Allusions to the myth such as “the rock, the vulture, and the chain” in the first stanza imply that Prometheus suffered a silent agonizing pain. This is also a paradox because he is being subjected to pain only a mortal would endure. (López) Also in the first stanza Byron uses personification in the phrase “sense of woe which speaks but in its loneliness” to better display the feelings Prometheus had during his suffering. In the fifth line (Lancashire)Byron asks “what was thy pity’s recompense?” to show that Prometheus’ efforts to help man brought him under punishment rather than any form of appraisal from Zeus the “Thunderer” as referred to in the second stanza. Receiving no reward for an act of kindness is one of the central themes in the poem that Byron is trying to put across. The use of “Godlike crime” in the third stanza is ironic because a God should not commit crimes; and yet, Prometheus being a Titan, committed such punishable crime of stealing fire for mankind. In lines one and fifteen, Byron uses metonymy and calls Prometheus “Titan!” which stresses his relationship to the Gods. Finally, in the last line Byron uses an antithesis “Death a Victory” to counter the frequent thought that death means defeat. With this, Byron implies that death is the ultimate reward. (López)

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