Elegy Poems: Definition & Examples


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question 1 of 3

A reflective poem that laments the loss of someone or something is known as _____.

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1. How do an elegy and a eulogy differ in terms of tone?

2. In Whitman's first stanza, when he says, O heart! heart! heart! as he sees the bleeding drops of red, Where on the deck my Captain lies, Fallen cold and dead, what stage of loss is he describing?

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About this Quiz & Worksheet

Ancient Greeks writers developed the practice of using verse to express the emotional reaction to death, war and other types of loss. Over time, this type of verse has become a traditional literary form used to convey sorrow over a broad range events and issues. This quiz/worksheet combo helps you understand the characteristics of these poems and their different forms and functions.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

In these assessments you'll be tested on:

  • Name for a poem that laments loss
  • Tone of a eulogy
  • Walt Whitman's elegy, 'O Captain! My Captain!'
  • Stages of loss explored in poems

Skills Practiced

This quiz and worksheet lets students practice the following skills:

  • Knowledge application - use your knowledge to describe the characteristics of a poem about loss
  • Distinguishing differences - compare and contrast the characteristics of eulogies and other forms of writing
  • Making connections - examine Walt Whitman's poem 'O Captain! My Captain!' to answer questions about the three stages of loss

Additional Learning

To learn more, review the accompanying lesson titled Elegy Poems: Definition & Examples. This lesson covers the following objectives:

  • List characteristics of elegiac poetry
  • Know different themes in elegiac poetry
  • Review the stanzas and different stages of loss in Whitman's 'O Captain! My Captain!'
  • Understand how the elegy has evolved over time