The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes: Summary, Theme & Poem Analysis


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Of what literary style is Alfred Noyes' 'The Highwayman' a typical example?

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1. In Alfred Noyes' 'The Highwayman,' why do the soldiers come for the highwayman?


What poetic technique does the following excerpt of 'The Highwayman' illustrate?

For the road lay bare in the moonlight; / Blank and bare in the moonlight; / And the blood of her veins, in the moonlight, throbbed to her love's refrain.

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About This Quiz & Worksheet

This poem paints a vivid picture of danger, betrayal, faithfulness and enduring love as Bess waits, bound and helpless, for her lover's arrival. She knows that he will be killed by royal troops if she cannot warn him and forces herself to a desperate action. The questions on the worksheet and quiz focus on the literary movement exemplified by the poem, its prevailing themes and what finally happens to the highwayman.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

You will be asked about the following in this worksheet and quiz:

  • The type of literary device used by Noyes in the poem
  • Which quote from the poem does not reflect death and love
  • Identity of the character who betrays the highwayman to the royal troops
  • What the highwayman does when he learns of Bess's sacrifice for him

Skills Practiced

  • Reading comprehension - confirm your understanding of the literary style of which The Highwayman is an example
  • Interpreting information - verify that you can read information about the poetic device used in the poem that are used to build up mystery
  • Information recall - access the knowledge you've gained about the occupation of the highwayman's betrayer

Additional Learning

To learn more about this poem, study the lesson titled The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes: Summary, Theme & Poem Analysis. The objectives below are addressed:

  • Explain what the highwayman did for a living
  • Learn why the King's troops were sent to arrest or kill him
  • Discuss the trap set for the highwayman
  • Understand the highwayman's final actions and tragic end