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There are several themes in common that are developed in The Oresteia and Leda and the Swan I have chosen to focus on deception and justice Deception and justice is central to both works They show justice in many different forms such as revenge vengeance divine justice and civil justice Deception takes different forms as well physical and verbal The theme of deception is most obvious in Leda and the Swan Here deception takes on physical form Yeats uses a swan as the metaphor because of its natural grace and beauty Swans are not often associated with being birds of violence One might envision a vulture attacking someone but swans are thought of as birds of beauty and grace and symbolize elegance and peacefulness The action of the swan in this poem is the total opposite and one may find it ironic This could imply the reason that Zeus chose this bird for his disguise it would be easier to surprise and overwhelm Leda Picture swans in your mind You see the snow white feathers the piercing eyes and the powerful wings These are extraordinary creatures often used to signify love and tenderness On the surface they appear tranquil and docile yet their physical attributes are only a facade for their truly mean spirit Swans are rather territorial animals who tend to be quite nasty when confronted with an undesirable situation In Leda and the Swan the beauty of the swan is skin-deep as well Despite having the glorious physical attributes of a swan he is also a vicious brute who acts out his male animalistic power over his female prey demonstrating the raw male and female relationships in nature Swan are huge birds and as pointed out in the Internet site The Swan and Leda a poem on the same subject as Leda and the Swan Swans unlike most birds have external genitals 1 Thus the swan is a perfect animal
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