“Prometheus” - Literary Analysis
Everyone experiences a time in their lives when they struggle with the issue of doing what is right for humanity. Human nature tells us to do what is best for mankind no matter what difficulties you face later. The decision may be accepted or rejected making that person a hero or a villain. Lord Byron addresses the suffering that Prometheus has to endure in his poem, “Prometheus.” Prometheus, a mythic hero, stole fire from the gods and gave it to the helpless immortals because he felt sorry for them. He knew fire would lessen human suffering and improve their lives but instead was punished by Zeus for committing the crime. Byron conveys to the reader how bad the punishment of Prometheus is by telling how he suffers. He is eventually freed by a strong man named Hercules. Byron uses allusions and themes to demonstrate these events that happen in the punishment of Prometheus.
In “Prometheus,” Lord Byron hints throughout the poem with allusions through imagery and his use of words and phrases. In the first stanza Byron immediately refers to Prometheus as “TITAN! to whose immortal eyes/The sufferings of mortality/Seen in their sad reality/Were not as things that Gods despise/What was thy pity’s recompense?” (Byron 1-5). This alludes to the fact that Prometheus, an immortal god, who is being punished will end up suffering like that of the average human. We see the mortal sadness in his immortal eyes. The reader immediately sees an immortal being as more powerful than the average mortal man. Lord Byron seems to be portraying Prometheus as half god and half man.
Another allusion appears in the first stanza that sums up the punishment that Prometheus will endure. “A silent suffering, and intense; The rock, the vulture, and the chain...” (Byron 6-7).
This refers to Prometheus being chained to a rock and tormented by a vulture. Zeus becomes angered when Prometheus rebels against the gods and steals the...