The Stolen Child : quotations

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The Stolen Child is a notable literary work by William Butler Yeats. A complete discussion of this literary work is given, which will help you enhance your literary skills and prepare for the exam. Read the main text, key info, Summary, Themes, Characters, Literary Devices, Quotations, Notes, to various questions of The Stolen Child.


The Stolen Child” is a famous poem by the Irish poet William Butler Yeats. Here are some famous quotations from the poem, along with explanations:

Where dips the rocky highland
Of Sleuth Wood in the lake,

Explanation: In these opening lines, the poem mentions the scene in a mystical and enchanting location. “Sleuth Wood” is a rocky highland that extends into a lake. This explanation immediately conjures an image of a wild, untamed, and natural setting. It’s a place that feels remote and unaffected by human civilization, emphasizing the allure of nature and the supernatural that will be central to the poem.

And of reddest stolen cherries.
Come away, O human child!

Explanation: In these lines, the speaker means to say that The faeries sing to the “human child,” inviting them to join in their world of enchantment. The reference to “reddest stolen cherries” is symbolic and represents the allure of the faeries’ world. These cherries are “stolen,” suggesting that the pleasures and delights presented by the faeries come at a price. The child is beckoned to leave the human world behind and enter a realm of innocence, freedom, and natural beauty.

To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,

Explanation: Here, the faeries continue their enchanting call. They urge the child to accompany them, hand in hand, to the “waters and the wild.” This line highlights the connection between the child and the faeries, suggesting a sense of unity and shared experience as they venture into the untamed beauty of nature. The child is promised a partnership with the faeries, who will guide them on this journey.

For be comes, the human child,
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
from a world more full of weeping than you.

Explanation: These lines reveal the central theme of the poem, which is the desire to escape the troubles and sorrows of the human world. The child is described as coming “from a world more full of weeping than you,” highlighting the faeries’ offer as an escape from the harsh realities of life. The child’s decision to go with the faeries represents a longing to return to a state of innocence, happiness, and harmony with nature.