The Tyger Heads of William Blake

The following table organizes details of the heads of the tyger featured at the bottom of Blake’s poem “The Tyger” in the different copies available at The William Blake Archive. There are thirteen images in all available at The William Blake Archive, which is a around half of all known copies of the Songs of Innocence and of Experience and none of the individual copies of the Songs of Experience. The William Blake Archive is an open-access, well-organized, and professionally presented repository of Blake’s visual works. The editors and their staff work very hard to provide as much material as possible and are … Continue reading The Tyger Heads of William Blake

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William Blake and Bad Taxidermy

I’ve always wondered a bit (and I’m not alone) at the facial expression of the Tyger in Blake’s “The Tyger” — it tends to look a bit silly and sheepish when compared to the destructive and dangerous animal described in the poem. The link below to a series of images of bad taxidermy on io9, however, makes me wonder if Blake was just following a bad model. The very first image is of a 1731 lion reconstructed from a pelt and bones by a taxidermist who had never seen a lion. The cougar about halfway down (copied below) almost looks … Continue reading William Blake and Bad Taxidermy

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