Imagery And Irony In Percy Shelley's Ozymandias

788 Words4 Pages
The most powerful pharaohs of Egypt will be forever immortalized within history. However, in the case of Ozymandias (Ramses II) his statue, as a representation of him, is left in the dust of the sands, decrepit in the place that was once his kingdom of Thebes (GCSE). In Percy Shelley’s poem, “Ozymandias,” a Petrarchan sonnet, Shelley thoroughly disvalues Ramses within the realms of three speakers: The narrator, the traveler, and Ozymandias himself. Percy uses mostly both visual imagery and irony to narrate the lost accomplishments of a King, therefore conveying the mortality of personal glory.
As the narrator begins their story to set the scene, they lay it out with visual imagery to express emotional distance. He describes to the listener,
…show more content…
Ultimately, the sculptor “mocked” Ozymandias both imitating perfectly but in a contemptuous manner even when Ozymandias gave his “heart that fed.” The irony is that even though Ozymandias radiated his prowess so that the sculptor could easily recreate his power, but in reality, the sculptor is the only one getting the attention and praise.
The next stanzas have imagery to implement a basis of irony. The traveler explains, “And on the pedestal, these words appear: (9)” the traveler passes the voice to Ozymandias: “My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings; (10)”. The term “King of Kings” gives the visualization of a powerful king because it is an allusion to Jesus in the bible as a savior. However, the subsequent stanzas show the opposite.
The last stanzas use ironic imagery, but the change of speakers further increases the outright nature of it. Ozymandias’ plaque says, “Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair! (11)” However:
Nothing beside remains. Round the

More about Imagery And Irony In Percy Shelley's Ozymandias

Open Document