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Conceit in the poem the windows by george herbert

  1. In the first three stanzas he records some of his early feelings about God which were not true faith at all, but exercises in indulgence, or self-gratification. In these respects Herbert can be considered to have broken new ground, into which Henry Vaughan followed later.
  2. Finally the poet meets the landlord,.
  3. So the inner life of the preacher must shine with the rich colour of the life of God.

A conversation with one of the artists revealed how much his own life and faith was expressed in his work. For the preacher too is something of an artist. He is a brittle crazie glasse: Yet in thy temple thou dost him afford This glorious and transcendent place, To be a window, through thy grace.

Doctrine and life, colours and light, in one When they combine and mingle, bring A strong regard and aw: Commentary The poem follows the pattern of the previous poems 'Church-lock and key' and 'The Church-floor' in the sense that each links aspects of the external church building with the internal heart of the Christian.

Conceit in the poem the windows by george herbert

Life and practice must go together: Every word needs to be 'heart deep': The parson is called to care for his flock and that care is woven into his sermons to make them 'exceeding reverend and holy'. It is interesting that Herbert takes St. For it is in these letters that the images of glass can be found. The first verse of the poem begins with a familiar question by the poet.

  1. Herbert's final lines have quite the opposite effect.
  2. Vaughan said of Herbert, 'The blessed man whose holy life and verse gained many pious converts, of whom I am the least.
  3. The final stanza of 'The Flower' also relates back to 'Affliction', for we can see the errors of false faith stemming from human pride.
  4. In 'Affliction' he charts, in a considered and meditative manner, the fluctuations and failings of his faith. Donne, having begun his poetic career writing love poems in which the ingenuity of thought, and originality of 'conceits', were the main criteria by which they were to be judged, employed the same methods when he turned to religious poetry.
  5. In Herbert's 'The Collar' we see the expression of anger and frustration at the apparent fruitlessness of serving God being stilled by the intervention of God. Some of Vaughan's ideas even seem to have been borrowed from Herbert, but it is reasonable to suppose that he felt he was sharing the ideas, rather than stealing them.

How can man in all his frailty reflect God in all his glory? The preacher is flawed like 'brittle crazie glasse', but it is through that very glass that God will be viewed. Stained glass windows often tell stories.

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Herbert would have seen the glorious richly coloured and expressive windows of Westminster Abbey and Cambridge colleges. After the glass was painted, it would have been heated to fix the colours — annealed. So the inner life of the preacher must shine with the rich colour of the life of God.

George Herbert Questions and Answers

Only that richness will win the hearer. The hearer will not be won by life and words which are 'watrish, bleak, and thin'. The third and final verse stresses the balance that needs to be found, and contains echoes of the Book of Common Prayer, where the prayer for church leaders is that 'they may both by their life and doctrine set forth thy true and lively Word'.

Introduction: Characteristics of Metaphysical poetry

The poet might have put equal weight on the importance of life and words coming together and finding integrity, but the poem ends with more weight being put on the emptiness of words without the backing of a holy life. Without the latter, the words do not penetrate to the inner heart and conscience so have the effect of a flare or firework which might momentarily fizz and crackle with life but will quickly vanish. We say to preachers as preachers do to themselves practise what you preach.

In this poem Herbert is saying the same thing, but with rather more elegance.