After the primary war, the “Symbolist Movement” began in France. This movement influenced English poets profusely. Yeats is one of them. He has been called the ‘chief representative’ of the “Symbolist Movement” in English literature. In his poems, he uses tons of symbols for various purposes in various contexts.
His symbolism was based upon the poetry of Blake, Shelley, and Rosette. He coins symbols from his study of the occult, Irish folklore, and mythology, magic, philosophy, metaphysical, paintings, and drawings which are generally unfamiliar to the readers.
It is true that the French Symbolist Movement features a great impact on Yeats. But despite this fact, Yeats’ use of symbols differs from that of them, in several ways.
Yeats makes use of a posh system of symbols in his poems. it’s both a standard also as a private symbol. Yeats’ symbols also are all-pervasive key-symbol. “Rose”, “Swan”, and “Helen” are key-symbols.
The ‘rose’ in Yeats’ poem is usually wont to mean earthly love but in “The Rose of the World” it also symbolizes eternal love and wonder.
‘Byzantium’ represents perfection and unity in Yeats’ poems. He feels that Byzantium symbolizes perfection, which the planet has never known before. He believes that in Byzantium, all spheres of life are united; there’s no fragmentation
a logo could also be a figure of speech or a literal word that assumes an additional meaning.
“Easter 1916” is remarkable for the depth and intensity of symbols which have three characteristic features: directness of expression illuminated by unexpected symbols, a tone of tragic solemnity, and knowledgeable quality. within the first stanza of the poem, the ‘close of day’ conveys the image of a night sky. during this poem, the word ‘stream’ symbolizes change and ‘stone’ symbolizes immobility and petrifaction. At the top of the poem, the poet utters:
“The second coming” is another famous symbolic poem of Yeats. during this poem, the ‘ceremony of innocence’ represent for Yeats for one among the qualities that made life valuable under the dying aristocratic social tradition. The expression ‘falcon and therefore the falconer’ have a symbolic meaning. A falcon may be a hawk and a hawk is that the symbol of the active or intellectual mind and ‘the falconer’ symbolizes the soul of it.
“A prayer for My Daughter” is another symbolic poem of Yeats. during this poem, the word ‘tower’ suggests Yeats’ vision of the dark way forward for humanity. it’s wont to suggest loneliness and seclusion tradition or national heritage. Again, ‘linnet’ symbolizes innocent and cheerful thoughts and ‘leaf’ symbolizes the soul of an individual.
“Sailing to Byzantium” is another symbolic poem by W.B. Yeats. Here during this poem, Yeats has used the basic symbols of earth, air, fire, and water. To Yeats, Byzantium may be a symbol of unity and perfection. Yeats was drawn to Byzantium and its golden age because he felt that they represented a sort of unity and perfection like the planet had never known before or since. In his poem ‘Sailing to Byzantium’, ‘Byzantium’ becomes the symbol of an ideal world.
“The Lake Isle of Innisfree” is another important symbolic poem by Yeats. during this poem, Yeats says us his homesickness. The poet has become weary of London life then he desires to return directly to the Lake Isle in his own country Ireland. He knows that in Ireland he can enjoy a peaceful life. The Lake Isle of Innisfree is the symbol of a peaceful place.