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What does Larkin mean by the term Whitsun?

What does Larkin mean by the term Whitsun?

Whitsun, or Whit Sunday, is the seventh Sunday after Easter (Pentecost), deep into spring, when people often marry. This may explain why Larkin saw so many wedding parties during an actual train ride in 1955, which gave him the germ of the poem.

What is the theme of the poem The Whitsun Weddings?

“The Whitsun Weddings” takes slightly satirical aim at the artificiality, conformity, and farcical nature of weddings to undermine the notion of love as some sort of grand, magical, and everlasting endeavor. In reality, the poem implies, marriage and love are commonplace and mundane.

What is the historical background of Whitsun wedding?

It has always been supposed the poem was based on an actual train journey Larkin made in 1955 on Whitsun Saturday, a day which was popular for weddings at that time though since there was a rail strike on that weekend Larkin scholar John Osborne now thinks the journey an unlikely one to have taken place.

How does Larkin treat the theme of marriage in the poem The Whitsun Weddings?

Although Larkin is more descriptive about marriages in the Self’s the Man, he has an overall dislike for them because he extends the same attitude in the Whitsun Weddings. Moreover, in both cases, Larkin considers his solitude better than being entangled in a marriage like those he observes.

What poems are in the Whitsun Weddings collection?


  • Here.
  • Mr Bleaney.
  • Nothing To Be Said.
  • Love Songs in Age.
  • Naturally the Foundation will Bear Your Expenses.
  • Broadcast.
  • Faith Healing.
  • For Sidney Bechet.

What does soppy Stern mean?

Parents at that time were frequently stern, demanding obedience and respect from children. They were, however, also soppy — that is, sentimental and maudlin.

What does the ship in the last stanza of next Please represent?

Larkin continues his extended metaphor until the end of the poem, where he flips the connotations of the device. Instead of representing promise, the ship in Stanza 5 is used to represent death. This sudden change from the glorified future to the harsh actuality of approaching death is incredibly depressing.

What marks off the girl from the rest in Philip Larkin’s poem?

Stanza Five Marked off the girls unreally from the rest. Larkin’s description of the wedding and the chaos surrounding the event is as minimizing as his description of people. By painting the wedding party with a broad brush, he makes the event itself seem ordinary.

What is the significance of the title of the poem At Grass?

The idiomatic phrase “to put at grass” indicates retirement. Therefore the title signifies the concept of retirement and old age. The first stanza:” The eye can hardly pick them out” signals the deterioration of vision in old age.

How many poems are in the Whitsun wedding?

32 poems
The Whitsun Weddings is a collection of 32 poems by Philip Larkin. It was first published by Faber in the United Kingdom on 28 February 1964.

What does the poem on the move capture?

Gunn’s poem, I think, captures the essence of the underlying confusion that prompted the sociological upheavals of the 50s and 60s. Many of society’s mores deserved to be rejected, but it was difficult if not impossible to find worthwhile replacements. The title and subtitle of the poem suggest action and movement.

Why is the Whitsun Weddings by Philip Larkin so famous?

It is one of Larkin’s most famous. Philip Larkin was what was known as a poet of the Movement. His poetry and poems, such as ‘The Whitsun Weddings’, was written in such a way that it reflected the lack of importance of Britain in a post-war world, and also echoed the changes that Britain was going through.

Is Philip Larkin a romantic poet?

Ironically, although Larkin abhorred the Romantic ideal of nature and the countryside, Robert Rehder believed that Larkin had more in common with the Romantics than he wanted there to be. His focus on the individual consciousness – as seen in ‘The Whitsun Weddings’ – and on isolation is a very Romantic notion.

Who owns the copyright to Philip Larkin’s poems?

Copyright © Estate of Philip Larkin. Reprinted by permission of Faber and Faber, Ltd. Source: Collected Poems (Farrar Straus and Giroux, 2001)

How many poems are in the Whitsun Weddings?

The Whitsun Weddings. Jump to navigation Jump to search. The Whitsun Weddings is a collection of 32 poems by Philip Larkin.