Sir Orfeo's Harp In Harpism

1869 Words8 Pages
Sir Orfeo is a powerfully magical tale of loyalty and devotion. The poem recounts Orfeo’s journey and the series of events that unfold when his wife, Heurodis is taken by the Fairy King. Throughout the text and its entirety, Orfeo’s harp acts as perhaps the most crucial symbol in the entire poem. Orfeo’s harping has the power to console him when his wife is taken, attract and calm wild beasts, and more importantly, persuade the King of Fairies to allow Orfeo to reunite with his beloved. ‘His harping offers a restoration of natural and civic harmony, and a close analysis of the progress of his art reveals the nature of his sojourn in fairyland and the meaning of Heurdosis’ return.’ (102, Lerer). In this essay, I will discuss the importance of Orfeo as a minstrel as well as the crucial nature of the harp throughout the poem. I will also discuss how his musical talent has a means of enhancing his ability to persuade those he encounters with particular reference to lines 417-473. i i i i i i i i i i i From the early onset of the poem, Orfeo is introduced as a king in England. While he holds great power by means of hierarchy, he is also a gifted harpist. From the first few lines of the poem, the inspirational and restorative powers of his music are eminent. i i i i i i i i i Orfeo mest of ani thing Lovede the gle of harping. (25-26) i i i i i Orfeo’s muscial ability is a result of his own “wittes-scharp” (30) and it is evident that his musical ability takes
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