This paper is an attempt to examine the use of language in the poetry of Gerald Manley Hopkins. While all the contemporaries of Hopkins are considered Victorian writers, he is classified as a modernist. The paper argues that Hopkins, though chronologically a Victorian, wrestled with words and gained uniqueness as a modern poet. The researcher critically examined more than a decade of his poems by looking at his use of neologisms, archaism, functional conversion, among others. The paper concludes that his use of vocabulary and syntax was complex and that he deliberately used or misused poetic license to attain uniqueness of self. In the conclusion, the researcher argues that although each poet has his or her own way of expressing himself or herself, he or she must still be seen as belonging to his or her age. Hopkins, however, lived and wrote in a particular age, but his deployment of language belonged to a different period.
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