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My Last Duchess Summary | Robert Browning

My Last Duchess Summary | Robert Browning

Writer’s Intro:

Robert Browning (1812-1889, Italy, Venice) was an English poet and playwright. He was known as one of the best Victorian poets because he was so good at writing dramatic monologues. My Last Duchess is one of his wonderful creations and we make a summary of it.



My Last Duchess deals with the themes of pride and envy, wisdom and rank, and art and the truth.


My Last Duchess Summary


The Duke in “My Last Duchess” is pretty much the green-eyed monster in the flesh of the Victorian patriarchal society. He’s almost an allegorical figure for jealousy. He doesn’t like how much his wife talks to other people, even if it’s just to thank them for bringing her some cherries. He is jealous of every smile and blush she gives to someone else, whether she does it on purpose or not. He’s so jealous that he can’t even talk to her about how she’s acting. Killing her is the only thing he can think of to do. He is jealous of any kind of attention, not just romantic attention.


The duke of Ferrara tells “My Last Duchess” to an envoy (representative) of a nobleman whose daughter he is about to marry. These details come out throughout the poem, but knowing them from the start helps show how Browning uses irony.


At the beginning of the poem, the duke has just pulled back a curtain to show the envoy a portrait of his previous duchess. Fra Pandolf, a monk and painter, made the portrait. The duke thinks that Fra Pandolf captured the unique look of the duchess in the painting. But the duke tells the envoy that his ex-wife didn’t only look at him with a deep, passionate look when she was with him. He says she was “too easily persuaded” to talk about how nice she was.


His tone gets harsher as he thinks about how she was impressed by both people and nature. This made him feel bad because she didn’t treat the “gift” of his “nine-hundred-year-old” family name and lineage as special. Instead of “teaching” her a lesson about how she shouldn’t love everything, he “ordered” that she be killed.

This is the end of our content Locksley Hall summary. Thank you for reading the content. Anyway, if you want to read more summaries from Victorian Poetry, please check the following articles:

Tithonus Summary
Oenone Summary
Locksley Hall
Fra Lippo Lippi
Andrea Del Sarto

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