Poems of W.B. Yeats: The Rose

Poems of W.B. Yeats: The Rose Essay Questions

  1. 1

    What are all of the possible meanings of the rose in this collection? Analyze all instances of its appearance in the collection.

  2. 2

    Describe the political climate in which this collection was published. Was Irish nationalism a viable political force at the time?

  3. 3

    Which poems bear on Yeats's relationship with Maud Gonne? What is the dominant emotion in these poems?

  4. 4

    What is the role of the mythical King Fergus in this collection? What does he symbolize to Yeats?

  5. 5

    Examine "The Lake Isle of Inisfree." How does the imagery of Yeats present location contrast with the lake isle where he would like to be?

  6. 6

    How does Yeats' poetic structure reflect the content of his poems? Choose two poems and analyze how their rhyme and meter structures reflect their subject matter.

  7. 7

    Why does Yeats use mythological figures in his collection? What do these allusions add? How might they inform Yeats' political relationships with Ireland and England?

  8. 8

    Analyze the title of "To the Rose upon the Rood of Time." What is its religious symbolism? What does the rose stand for? How can time act as a crucifix?

  9. 9

    Contrast three ancient Greek or Roman allusions in the collection with three instances of Irish mythology. Why does Yeats mix references to Classical mythology with Irish mythology?

  10. 10

    What is Yeats's vision of a more perfect Ireland and Irish people as expressed in this collection? Does he argue that the Irish people ought to change in any way?