William Blake

(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827 / London)

The Tyger


Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forest 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?

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002
Edited: Monday, November 28, 2011

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Comments about this poem (The Tyger by William Blake )

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  • Gracie B (11/11/2013 7:28:00 PM)

    God made the lamb but also the tiger. The world was made with dark and light, gentleness and horror. (Report) Reply

  • Shru Dark (10/10/2013 1:41:00 PM)

    The tiger symbolises a satan and the lamb symbolises a gentle and innocent thought, which the against the tiger which is fierce. (Report) Reply

  • Cuckoo Bird (10/3/2013 5:03:00 AM)

    When we read this poem we analyzed and contrasted THE SUBLIME (TYGER) and THE BEAUTIFUL(LAMB) . As it is well known Tyger is a fierceful animal and Lamb is an innocent animal. Thus this forms the strikin/ sharp contrast in the poem.
    Thus by our approach to the contrast found in the poem we could arrive at the theme of the poem better. Thus this is such a poem that moved us/ made me wonder at the 2 contrastive creatures(The Tyger and the Lamb) of GOD. (Report) Reply

  • Angela Devine (5/22/2013 8:41:00 AM)

    for some reason I cannot change the '&' symbols to the word 'and'. Also the exclamation in my version after 'clasp' on stanza 4 is a question mark. (Report) Reply

  • Angela Devine (5/22/2013 8:39:00 AM)

    I am very curious of to the punctuation in this poem. Is it correct? I have a book here and it has this poem but there is no exclamations after the Tyger Tyger. This is the way the poem i have is written. Note the punctuation that's not in the above version. can i ask why this is?

    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 water’d 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? (Report) Reply

  • Angela Devine (5/22/2013 8:38:00 AM)

    I am very curious of to the punctuation in this poem. Is it correct? I have a book here and it has this poem but there is no exclamations after the Tyger Tyger. This is the way the poem i have is written. Note the punctuation that's not in the above version. can i ask why this is?

    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 water’d 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? (Report) Reply

  • . Watson (12/4/2011 8:29:00 PM)

    this a very intriguing poem and one of my favorites. poses a good question (Report) Reply

  • Jack Strange (9/10/2011 4:37:00 PM)

    Here's Blake's 'The Tyger' put to music:

    http: //soundclick.com/share.cfm? id=1130273 (Report) Reply

Read all 8 comments »

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