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The Chimney Sweeper by William Blake

            "The Chimney Sweeper" was a poem written by William Blake in 1789. Blake delivers this short poem in a heartfelt way. He uses poor living conditions and endangerment as open arms for children that were sold at a young age and were made to become chimney sweepers. Blake's poem was written in first person and shows three main literary devices; irony, symbolism, and point of view. The reader overcomes heartbreak, gains faith, and accepts the challenges that life gives him because he knows that it will be alright in the end.
             Blake uses irony when he was speaking in first person. Irony is defined as when the writer says one thing but simply means another. He starts the poem off telling the audience that his mother died when he was a young child and at that same time, he stated that "his father sold me". Saying that the boy "cried weep, weep, weep" instead of saying "sweep" implies that he was too young to talk or work. How count this be? Children were sold in London at an early age. Because of their small size, they were the perfect candidates for being chimney sweepers. Blake intentionally made the reader speak the word "weep" to show the child crying from the poor living conditions. Blake .
             Blake also uses symbolism in the dream little Tom Dacre had one night. Symbolism means the use of symbols to represent ideas or qualities. Tom dreamed heavily in the second third and fourth stanzas to depict what Blake was trying to symbolize from the chimney sweepers. It started with the dream that thousands of sweepers were "locked up in coffins of black". Immediately the reader understands that the word "black" is used to symbolize death. He feared that they would die if they kept living that way and being mistreated. Then later, Tom dreamed of an "Angel who had a bright key". The angel with the bright key was used to symbolize "God" in such a sense.

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