Gottfried August Bürger Lenore Analysis

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One of the earliest imitations of the popular ballad is Gottfried August Bürger's Gothic ballad Lenore (1774), which tells the story of a young woman who is visited by her lover's ghost and killed by him. One of Bürger's major influences was Sweet William's Ghost, a ballad collected by Thomas Percy (Crawford 29), as well as Slavic and German adaptations of the material (Child 593). The ballad was extremely popular with the British Romantic poets, including Coleridge, Southey, Byron and Keats, and translated, copied and imitated a great number of times. Scott's translation was one of his first publications (31), and is very close to Bürger's original in language, tone, and even onomatopoeia. He even furthered the ballad's traditional appearance by dividing the stanzas,…show more content…
The version printed in The English and Scottish Popular Ballads is a broadside adaptation (593), as it is clearly visible in the introductory stanza, in which the narrator draws attention to themselves (l.2). Furthermore, the narrative structure of the poem is not as economical as in other popular ballads. Instead of beginning at the climax, the story is told ab ovo, starting before the young lovers fall in love (l.3-14). Beside the returned lover, The Suffolk Miracle utilizes one of the most common and most tragic themes in popular ballads (Kaufmann 40): the separation of two lovers. The young woman's father does not approve of her chosen one, and sends her away to separate them. Line 21 to 28 describe the couple's suffering, but unlike Jane Reynolds, the young woman remains faithful to her
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