A detailed analysis of Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard,” perhaps the most popular poem in English. My handout examines the structure of the poem, its major themes, and its imagery, stanza pattern, and sound devices.
As an addendum to the answer key, I have included four pages of information about the background of Gray’s poem and a stanza-by-stanza analysis dealing with its vocabulary, allusions, its themes, and stylistic devices not discussed in the student handout. These notes may prove helpful in answering any questions which your pupils may ask about Gray’s “Elegy,” or you may simply decide to incorporate some of its points into class discussion of the poem.
The three-page student handout section of the handout, which has blanks which your students can fill in, is suitable as an in-class activity or for homework. As mentioned, an Answer Key is provided on a separate sheet at the end of the handout.
Prepared by Professor William Tarvin, Ph.D., who has published many articles on literature in scholarly journals.