Sailing To Byzantium Analysis

1774 Words8 Pages
Sailing to Byzantium is indeed one of the best known lyrics of W.B. Yeats. Written in 1926, it appeared in Yeats 1928 collection The Tower. The title of the poem Byzantium was an ancient Greek city, the capital of Byzantine ruled by the Turkish Sultan and city is now known as Istanbul. Before that, it was Constantinople at around 670 B.C. to 190 A.D., when it was captured by the Romans. Thus, the place was known for its work of art especially, “mosaic work” mentioned by Yeats in his poem Sailing to Byzantium. Sailing to Byzantium is a highly symbolic poem mainly associating with long association. The poem is also somehow similar to Buddhism philosophy and also the philosophy of Plato. The reason can be, after he was rejected by Christianity, Yeast’s own religion was indeed…show more content…
This essay will discuss the symbolism of long association, first discussing death and old age, ancient spiritual song and music finally talks about Byzantines emperor.
Yeats writes in his essay, the symbolism of Poetry, "All sounds, all colors, all forms, either because of their preordained energies or because of long association, evoke indefinable and yet precise emotions, or as I prefer to think, call down among us certain disembodied powers”. Therefore Yeats fulfills this statement when he brings out the symbolism of long association. So Yeats argues that Byzantine is a perfect place that is similar to the heavenly land. This is one of the most predominant symbols in the poem. Thus this symbolism makes prominent when he mentions in the phares, “is no country for old men” as he feels neglected by the society where he went for retreat. Moreover he states that the modern society only seeks for material world and ignores the inner morality. Yeats, now an old man, wants to escape to the holy city of Byzantium as the present generation neglects and doesn’t value greatness of the past. Poets also means that physically though, there
Open Document