The World is Too Much With Us: Summary, Appreciation and Questions and Answers

The sonnet title “The Word is Too Much With Us” offers a glimpse of the sonnet theme. The poet in this sonnet tells us about man’s love for money that is hardly useful to his life.

Stanza-wise summary

1. The world is too much ………………………. It moves us not.

In these lines the poet says that man is wasting his powers in earning and spending of money. He does not love and respect nature anymore. Now a days the only purpose of his life is to earn and spend money, as much as he can. Man has lost his ability to enjoy the beauty of nature. The beautiful scenes like moonlight falling on the sea and the blowing of the wind does not attract him. He has completely forgotten the pleasure and joy which he had when he used to respect and love nature.

2. Great God ………………………. his wreathed horn.

The poet is against this attitude of man. He is very unhappy. He prays to God and says to him that he would prefer to become Greek Pagan instead of remaining a Christian after looking at the money-minded attitude of the people of the earth. As a Pagan he would respect and love nature. He would enjoy the beauty of nature. He would watch the grass lands, Proteus, the sea god in Greek mythology rising from the sea and Triton, the son of Poseidon and Amphitrite blowing his horn to calm down the angry waves of sea. These scenes would immediately fill his heart with joy.

Summary The World is Too Much With Us

The poet says that the people of this world have become money minded. Their only aim of life is to earn money and then to spend it. They care only to earn lots of money and then to spend it in whatever way they like. In this way, they are wasting away their spiritual powers. They are getting away from nature and are nowadays unable to enjoy the beauty of nature. According to the poet, nature should be very important for their lives. The people have become too money-minded and they do not find beauty and peace in nature. They have given their hearts to the god of wealth which is not good. According to the poet, people have lost their capacity to enjoy the beauty of nature. The beautiful scene of moonlight falling on the surface of the sea does not attract their attention to it. The wind which blows very strongly in the day making a lot of noise but when the night comes it becomes calm and blows lightly. But they do not find these beautiful scenes pleasurable. For us, there is nothing special in these scenes. They have no interest left in those natural scenes. The beauty of nature does not fill their heart with pleasure and joy anymore.

The poet is not at all happy with this attitude of people towards nature. He does not like it. He is very sad. He wants people to respect and love nature. He prays to God that he would like to become a Greek Pagan. As a Pagan, he would worship nature. He will live in nature and will be happier than what he now is. He will also watch the Proteus, the sea god in Greek mythology, rising from the sea. He will also hear the Triton, the son of Poseidon and Amphitrite, blowing his horn to calm down the angry sea waves. In this respect, the Greek paganism was better than Christianity that has made people money-minded.

Critical Appreciation

The title of the sonnet “The Word is Too Much With Us” gives an idea about the theme of the sonnet. In this sonnet, Wordsworth tells us about man’s love for money which is hardly useful for his life. The poet says that nowadays man gives all importance to money only. All the other things for him are less important. Even nature which used to be very beautiful for him does not attract him. But in the past, it was not like this. In the past man used to enjoy the beauty of nature. He used to enjoy very much the scene of moonlight falling on the surface of the sea. But in the present time, he does not enjoy this also. He also used to love the thrilling sound of the wind in the day time and the light wind blowing at night. But today he does not feel attracted towards these scenes. These beautiful scenes of nature have no importance left for man. Now he does not like the beauty of nature. The poet is not happy with this change in man. According to the poet, man has started worshipping money instead of nature. The poet does not like it. The poet wants man to love nature more. The poet also wants man to respect nature. According to the poet, if a man loves nature he will become happier and will be closer to God. His life will also become better. He will feel happier more, peaceful and more satisfied. But nowadays man has forgotten his love for nature. He does not remember the joy he used to have when he used to love and enjoy nature. But the poet still wants to love and enjoy nature. So he prays to God that he would prefer to be Pagan to his remaining a Christian. A Pagan is a person whose religion is not Christian. The poet also says that if he becomes a Pagan, he will enjoy freely the beauty of nature. This will make him feel happy. The poet also tells about his love for nature gods in Greek mythology. The poet says he will then be able to see Proteus who in Greek mythology is a sea god. He will watch him rising from the sea. The poet will also watch Triton who is the son of Poseidon and Amphitrite in Greek mythology. Triton had the ability to calm down the angry waves of the sea by blowing his horn. In this way, the poet will be able to live in nature and will be happier than what he is today in the company of the money-minded people.

Assessment Questions

Q.1. When was the poem first published?
Ans. This poem was first published in 1807.

Q.2 What is the theme of this poem?
Ans. The theme of this poem is man’s love for money against his respect and love for nature.

Q.3. According to the poet, why can man not enjoy the beauty of nature any more?
Ans. According to the poet, man cannot enjoy the beauty of nature anymore because he gives more importance to money than anything else.

Q.4 What is now the aim of man’s life?
Ans. To earn and spend money as much as possible has become the aim of man’s life.

Q.5 Why does the poet want to be a Pagan?
Ans. The poet wants to be a pagan because then he can live in nature and enjoy its beauty freely.

Q.6 What is that wealth that nature can give to man?
Ans. Nature makes man content, peaceful. Through nature, man learns to be happy.

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