Get here the summary, questions, answers, textbook solutions, extras, pdf of the story She Walks in Beauty by Lord Byron of NBSE Class 11 Alternative English. However, the given notes/solutions should only be used for references and should be modified/changed according to needs.
Summary: She Walks in Beauty is a poem in eighteen lines about female beauty. The speaker describes a woman who is both beautiful on the outside and inside. Although it is commonly classified as a love poem, the poet never expresses his feelings for the subject. He emphasises the subject’s allure and purity. The speaker is an obviously biased observer who appears to be completely fascinated by the beauty of the woman. He is telling himself what he likes best about this woman while also communicating his thoughts to a larger audience – the reader. As a result, we see a picture of this woman as seen through someone else’s eyes. The speaker emphasises that it is not just about outward appearances. Near the end of the poem, the description of her physical beauty is matched by the description of her inner beauty or ‘goodness.’
The main themes of the poem are beauty and the harmony of mind and body. Lord Byron uses phrases like “tender light” to describe and compare beauty, as he creates lovely imagery for her charming features, the eloquence of speech, and purity of love. While using classical diction, Byron emphasises beauty. He believes that beauty comes from within and that the body is merely a reflection of that beauty. Furthermore, the balance of light and dark clearly indicates beauty’s perfection, where even minor changes can detract from it. The thematic thread of beauty and harmony runs throughout the poem.
A. Answer the following questions briefly.
1. Why is the woman presented against the backdrop of night?
Answer: The woman is shown against a clear night lit up by stars, implying that her beauty is celestial and almost spiritual in nature. Her beauty embodies the best of both the dark and the light.
2. Do you think the poet is trying to bring out the softness of the woman’s beauty by stating that daylight is gaudy?
Answer: Yes, the poet is trying to bring out the softness of the woman’s beauty by stating that daylight is “gaudy”. He brings in a contrasting image.
5. What is the story behind the winsome smile?
Answer: The lady’s endearing smile reflects the amount of time she has spent doing good deeds. It demonstrates her goodness and kindness, and as a result, her mind is at peace with all below.
B. Read the following lines and critically analyse them with reference to the context.
1. She walks in beauty, like the night of cloudless climes and starry skies; And all that’s best of dark and bright Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
a. What effect does the poet manage to conjure by the phrase `walks in beauty’?
Answer: The phrase ‘walks in beauty’ gives the impression that the poet is extolling the women’s beauty. It alludes to a higher dimension where the poet’s love has entered. It appears that even her movement enhances her beauty.
b. Is the word ‘cloudless’ an allusion to her beauty?
Answer: Yes, the word “cloudless” refers to the woman’s beauty. Her beauty is compared to a starry night in a place where there are no clouds.
c. What meets in her aspect and eyes?
Answer: All of the “best of dark and bright” collides in her face and eyes. Her striking eyes create a kind of balance between the dark and the light.
2. One shade the more, one ray the less, Had half impaired the nameless grace Which waves in every raven tress, Or softly lightens o’er her face;
a. What does the first line indicate about the woman’s beauty?
Answer: The first line, ‘One shade the more, one ray the less,’ suggests that the woman had a perfect type of beauty with the right amount of “shade” and “ray.” Her beauty would be jeopardised if she fiddled with it.
b. Why doesn’t the poet name the beauty?
Answer: The poet does not name the beauty because it is a reference to all women, not just one in particular.
c. Is her beauty so hard to define that she remains nameless?
Answer: The beauty of a woman is so difficult to describe that no words can do it justice. As a result, she goes unnamed.
C. Answer the following questions in detail.
1. While listing the woman’s physical attributes the poem also focuses on inner beauty. Is this the poet’s way of stating that complete beauty is both within and without?
Answer: The poet praises the woman’s beauty in Lord Byron’s poem “She Walks in Beauty.” However, the poet not only focuses on the woman’s external appearance but also on her internal appearance, elevating her to the level of divinity and praiseworthiness. He emphasises how her person embodies the duality of loveliness. There is a comparison of physical characterization with the moral depiction in each stanza. The woman walks through the starry night sky. To emphasise the duel comparison, the poet employs light and dark imagery.
As the feature that best reveals a person’s heart, the “eyes” is an appropriate feature to illustrate both physical and inner beauty. Her inner being, akin to “nameless grace,” is visible in her “raven tresses,” which also softly lighten her face. Furthermore, the woman’s serene and sweet thoughts show how pure and dear her mind must be. The poet also expresses the idea that the purity and beauty of a woman’s reason emanate from within, which is why her winsome smile reflects that she spent her days doing good. Her goodness and kindness bring about peace of mind and a heart filled with innocent love. Indeed, the physical and inner beauty of the woman is praised throughout the poem, and her inner beauty even enhances the beauty of her physical features. As a result, complete beauty exists both within and without.
Additional/extra questions and answers/solutions
1. Who do you believe the poem’s lady is?
Answer: The lady in the poem appears to be as lovely as a dark night with a clear sky and bright stars. She is a lovely lady with the beauty of a starry night.
2. What is the theme of the poem She Walks in Beauty?
Answer: The theme of the poem is a lady’s extraordinary beauty, both internally and externally. This poem is a lingering gaze on the woman’s perfection. She embodies a kind heart and a calm mind. The poet makes no demands or concessions, only expressing gratitude.
5. ‘Beauty is only skin deep.’ Do you agree with the statement? Explain your points of view in a few sentences.
Answer: I agree with the statement. Beauty is not defined by flawless features, clear skin, gleaming hair, or fashionable clothing. Beauty is about a person’s heart. The person’s outward appearance will reflect their helpful nature, guilt-free mind, cheerful attitude, and kind way of speaking. They say that the eyes are the windows to the soul. If a person has evil thoughts and bad intentions, it shows in their eyes. The evil mind will be reflected in the expression on the face. Harsh words will reveal their unkind nature. So beautiful features and flawless skin are not true indicators of beauty.
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