A Literary Analysis of We Are Seven by Wordsworth

Categories: We are seven

In Wordsworths We Are Seven, Wordsworth seems to make it look as if the little girl doesnt understand there are only five and not seven children, due to the deaths of two siblings. The adult is failing to grasp some romantic elements such as the childs simplicity/innocence of death or her downright stubbornness towards the adults meddling remarks.

The adult fails to understand that the girl does not fully understand the deaths of her siblings. In the first line of the poem, the little girl is described as a simple child.

As we go further into the poem, it seems the adult has forgotten that he is conversing with a child, not rather with an adult. He does not realize that maybe this childs innocence/simplicity has not allowed her to understand the concept of death. Although the fourth line states What should it know of death, he does not acknowledge this thought, as it seems she does not know what death is.

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In lines 49-60:

The first to go was sister Jane;

In bed she moaning lay,

Till God released her of her pain;

And then she went away

And when the ground was white with snow,

And I could run and slide,

My brother John was forced to go,

And he lies by her side,

The little girl seems to think that they only went away for awhile, almost like she expects them to come back.

Although her siblings are dead, the girl may still consider them as part of her family.

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Maybe she does fully understand the concept of death and accepts the deaths of her siblings, but she refuses to dismiss them as family. Back to lines 49-60, she also speaks of her two siblings as though she was close to them when they were living. The adult never takes into consideration that she probably felt she would be neglecting the memory of her siblings. In line 64, the adult unknowingly persists as it sounds like the girl is crying with despair O, Master! We are seven.

In this poem, the presence of the adult has the reader thinking that the girl is too innocent simple to comprehend the death of her siblings. Yet, this may not be the case at all; what if the girl fully comprehends their deaths and does not feel that she would be neglecting their memory by not accounting for them? Moreover, it seems she does not appreciate the adult's meddling comments regarding her dead siblings. Maybe this girl is trying to show the adult that no matter what he says she was standing her ground, and it was none of his business attempting to make her think otherwise. Hence, line 69 exclaims, Nay, we are seven!

In conclusion, the innocence/simplicity of the child is not the only romantic element the adult failed to grasp, but possibly one of many.

Updated: Apr 14, 2023
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A Literary Analysis of We Are Seven by Wordsworth. (2023, Apr 14). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/a-literary-analysis-of-we-are-seven-by-wordsworth-essay

A Literary Analysis of We Are Seven by Wordsworth essay
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