The Tyger

by WILLIAM BLAKE (1757-1827)

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare seize the fire?

And what shoulder, and what art.
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? and what dread feet?

What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

William Blake

William Blake is described as a man shorter than average height, but strongly built and quite hardy. He was known to take frequent 40-mile walks with his wife, Catherine. Blake’s large luminous eyes made an impression upon those who met him. His light colored hair was said to be tinged by gold and reminiscent of a lion’s mane. The multi-talented Blake was regarded as an eccentric, even a madman by some, during his lifetime. Interest in Blake’s work grew after his death and gave rise to various anecdotes about him that are doubtful at best.

William Blake Contemporaries
Robert Burns
Friedrich von Schiller
Sir Walter Scott
John Cunningham

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