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Analysis of A Description of A City Shower by Jonathan Swift

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Naijaoets.com.ng has analyzed some poems relating to London and the poem "A Descrition of A City Shower" is another instance of classic poems written about London. The poet described the messy state of his city during the rainy season. The mental images painted in the poem might not match the present day London but it gave the readers a clear view of what London was in the year 1710 when the poem was crafted by the poet, Jonathan Swift.The poem divided into multi-stanzas has its summary shown that when its about to rain, their would be a heavy cloud, a thicker odious environment and the cats will be seen so moody, and the poet's advice to stay at with wine than attempt to go for a diner (according to the first stanza of the poem which has a total of twelve lines). 

What follows is the effect of the rain on the people around_ running here and there to hide from the rain: 
"To Shops in Crouds the daggled Females fly (which is metaphor)
Pretending to cheapen Goods, but nothing buy
The Templer spruce, while ev'ry Spout's a-broach (the templer: law student from Temple, London)
Stays till 'tis fair, yet seems to call a Coach. (alliteration found in the line)
The tuck'd-up Semptstress walks with hasty Strides
While Streams run down her oil'd Umbrella's Sides
Here various Kinds by various Fortunes led (various is repeated, Kind = people, Fortunes = ambitions)
Commence Acquaintance underneath a Shed."

From the above quote, the rain changed the course of humans intentions which led to most of them acting wierd and fake; many who wouldn't have been friendly force started friendly conversations with other fellows camped by the sudden rain under a tiny roof, ladies run into shops are seen making enquiries about products they wouldn't buy, the students kept calling the cabs but not with the intention of leaving unless the rain stops, the dressmaker was working hasty under her umbrella as if she would be late for a certain appointment (according to the third stanza of the poem). The fourth stanza is an end-rhyming lines of eleven in total. It gave a detailed description of the flood; its smelly nature, how it navigated its ways through the city (They, as each Torrent drives, with rapid Force/ From Smithfield, or St Pulchre's shape their Course/ And in huge Confluent join at Snow-Hill Ridge/ Fall from the Conduit prone to Holborn-Bridge), and how the flood swiftly travel with any helpless things that fall into its path (examples seen in the poem are "Drown'd Puppies", "stinking Sprats", "Dead Cats", "Turnip-Tops").


The author of Gullivers Travels, Jonathan Swift lived between 30th November, 1667 and 19th October, 1745. He was born in Republic of Ireland and did attend University of Oxford. Swift, during his lifetime was known as a poet and Dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin among other things. 
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Enunwa Chukwudinma S aks samueldpoetry
(the Leo with wings flying)
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