The Seafarer

Published: 2021-09-03 06:15:14
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Category: Nature

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Matthew Clare Ms. McIntyre British Literature Tuesday, September 25, 12 The Seafarer Each struggles with the storms of life. The long nights fighting the icy cold seas. Ideas fill minds with despair and doubt. Some struggle with the knowledge of coming danger, others with the fear of not knowing. “The Seafarer” is an elegy that compares the sea to the fear of everyman, of every struggle and hardship. However, contained in this elegy is also the answer to these fears. The author depicts the value that one should not be concerned with this world, but rather to take joy in the Lord.
The author of “The Seafarer” describes the sea as a grave for young men and a chance for a life filled with God. The author uses personification to depict the sea as it really was, an evil being that drew men into its icy waves of doom. The Anglo-Saxons were faced with the decision everyday to toy with death at the clutches of this beast. In lines 2-3 the author describes how “The see took me, swept me back and forth in sorrow and fear and pain. ” The personification the speaker gives to the sea is that of an old, drunk father who grabs his own sons after drinking and beats them.
With pain, the people living on land view the sea in this manner. In lines 4-5 the speaker describes how the sea showed him the pain and suffering in hundreds of ports and ships. This hyperbole can also be viewed as personification. Pain and suffering can be viewed as the abusive father, whereas the ports and ships can be viewed as a mothers care and protection. This idea shows that the Anglo-Saxons viewed the sea as an evil creature that drew them into its grasp.
The speaker than changes the tone and describes how man should not be concerned with worldly possessions “The wealth of the world neither reaches to heaven nor remain” lines 66-67, but instead the speaker tells readers that one should “fear God and strive for treasures in heaven” lines 99-100. Treasure intended for heaven, but nothing golden shakes the wrath of God. The speaker tells us that we should “Love world and hate the evil but never to harm it” line 112 – 113 because God’s fate for us is “mightier than any mans mind. The author of “The Seafarer” describing the sea as a grave for young men who are seeking a chance at a life filled with God. The poem combines the elements of personification and theme to paint for the reader a scene of death, with the chance of escape into God’s hope. The cold waters of death roared and screamed in every sailor’s daily tasks. Forced to choose between the desolate and lonely life at sea, or a small and meaningless life on land. However, there is a silver lining in “The Seafarer” which leads to a life of service and God; life of meaning, filled with people.

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