My Last Duchess and Horse Whisperer Poem Comparison Essay

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My Last Duchess and Horse Whisperer poem comparison In the horse whisperer the poem is narrated by a horse whisperer, who begins by describing his work with horses and the secrets of his trade, which sound like magic but seem completely natural. When the people who once used his skills turn against him, believing that he uses witchcraft, the speaker decides to finally give up his trade, even though he had sworn to protect its secrets. The speaker also chooses to use his powers against the owners of the horses, corrupting the animals, before fleeing the country. The poem creates a strong sense of the relationship between man and horse and the tensions between superstition, religion and progress are explored. In my last duchess the characters mentioned in this poem are based on real life, historical figures. The narrator is Duke Alfonso II who ruled a place in northern Italy called Ferrara between 1559 and 1597. The Duchess of whom he speaks was his first wife,Lucrezia de' Medici who died in 1561 aged 17, only two years after he married her. In real life, Lucrezia died in suspicious circumstances and might have been poisoned. The poem is set in 1564, three years after the death of the Duchess. An emissary has been sent to see the Duke from the Count of Tyrol. The Count is the father of the Duke's next wife (he married three times in all). The Duke shows the emissary a picture of his late wife and remarks on her character, suggesting that she was unfaithful to him - and hinting that he might have killed her because of it. During his speech, the Duke makes himself look arrogant, insensitive and selfish. My last duchess is one of Browning's best known dramatic monologues. There is only ever one speaker in a monologue. The poem is written in iambic pentameter (the rhythm of each line is 'de-dum', five times) and in rhyming couplets. This poem is one long speech (a

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