Tintern Abbey by William Wordsworth

Book Report/Review
Book Reports
Pages 4 (1004 words)
Download 0
William Wordsworth uses nature as a key relational element for life. A reading of Tintern Abbey readily demonstrates the poet's framing of his own life, and ours, in terms of the natural beauty that surrounds him. Moreover, it is significant that his characterization of life in this way embraces both the inner person as well as the outer one.


For Wordsworth, Nature is a refuge for the spirit. In one of his deepest expressions, found in lines 55-57 of the poem, he speaks to the Wye Valley as though it is more than just a place for respite from modern life; his language is that of a man to his lover. "How oft, in spirit, have I turned to thee; O sylvan Wye!; thou wanderer thro' the woods; How often has my spirit turned to thee!" (Wordsworth, (1916), p. 233). The Wye is not just a landscape where he comes to find peace; it is a wanderer through the woods. It is alive and moving, an animate friend to whom he turns so that his spirit can be refreshed, renewed, and inspired. Thus, at the deepest level of his being, Wordsworth finds Nature waiting there for him.
In contrast to the spirituality of nature, he also finds within it that which is as mundane as the passage of time. As human beings, we are always aware that time marching on. We see the days come and go, we watch the weeks, months, and years as they advance ever forward. Yet, for Wordsworth, even this routine aspect of everyday life is expressed in terms of nature. For him, years are not just years; they are "summers, with the length; Of five long winters!..." (Lines 1-2, p. 233). His life is not the mere accumulation of years; it is the warmth and freedom of summer leavened with the long winter. ...
Download paper
Not exactly what you need?