About the Poet:
Born in 1788, Byron has been regarded as one of the controversial figures of the romantic era. He carried in him a spirit of romanticism, which was clearly evident in his works. He was a charming personality and was in favor of both men and women. His mother left behind her a huge estate for him to live lavishly by himself with his friends. He was born with a clubbed foot, which made him conscious of many events. Lord Byron died in a war in Greece and was revered as a heroic character after his death by the Greeks. It is believed that after his death, all his adventures in written works were burned down by his friends. He was a man of looks and words, lived an aristocratic lifestyle, and traveled heavily with his friends. He is also said to have an illegitimate relationship with his half-sister. Whatsoever, his notoriously awkward nature was covered by the renowned works he left for his readers to cherish.
Prometheus: Poetic Devices
Fire here is a symbol of awakening and enlightenment. Wherein God, Zeus, is shown as a symbol of the evil power of oppression and wickedness, Prometheus has been shown as a symbol of an angel.
The poem is written in free verse, with the first stanza having fourteen lines, the second stanza twenty-one lines, the third stanza twenty-five. The poem consists of eight iambs in a line.
The poem circles around a heroic character Prometheus who is a Greek god, and Zeus, who was the highest of the Gods, has been shown in a villainous character. The poem begins with a sympathetic scene, where Prometheus was seen tied to a rock with chains, and he looks pathetic, in a dreadful state, as if he is going through severe punishment. But he doesn’t moan or cry; he stands there still while the eagles devour his liver and feed on it. The liver grows again, but the process of ruthless events continues. The poet here tries to describe the events in a manner that the readers feel pity for Prometheus. So what did Prometheus do to end up in such an awful state? The poem is written about an episode of Greek mythology, which is said to be a clash between good and evil. Here the poet sees the story through a different lens. Prometheus was a Greek God who stole fire from the hill of Olympus and gave the method to the common people. Due to this, he was subjected to intense treatment for this deed by the God, Zeus. He was punished for acting against the will of God. He wasn’t afraid to suffer consequences, even if it meant slow Death to him. The poet ensured to make an analysis that was different from those of the Greek scriptures. Further, the poet continues that power can turn into tyranny in no time. The poet says that no matter how much they ill-treated Prometheus, God was unable to defy his will. The poet gives undeniable reasons to contribute to the conflict of right and wrong. Prometheus was steadfast that he didn’t do any wrong by helping humanity, and he continued to suffer silently. The major theme of the poem lies in the comparison of God with tyranny, in which the poet says that God imposed his views on us in such a manner that we always tend to think of Him in the right picture. The poet ends the poem by saying that Prometheus doesn’t die in vain, as he dies proclaiming his own victory.
The poet considers Prometheus as half-Human and half-God. The audience can interpret the figure to be familiar to Christ, who came to earth to save mankind from destruction. The poet tries to exhibit ideas contrary to what the heavenly intelligence would allow. The poet tries to remark on power and how sometimes even God wants to win a monopoly over it. The poem ends with showcasing Prometheus as an enlightened figure.
This poem is one of the infamous creations of Lord Byron. The poem represents in a true sense a romantic revolt attitude. The poem revolves around a Greek myth, which Byron tends to see with his own understanding. The poem can be regarded as parallel to John Milton’s Paradise Lost, where Lucifer gave the knowledge of Freedom, and God had imposed his restrictions.