We can be sure the queen was not traumatised by my staring, as when next we met she gave me a medal. As I prepared to go to the palace, people would say: ‘Will it be the actual queen, the queen herself?’ Did they think contact with the anointed hand would change you? Was that what the guests at the palace feared: to be changed by powerful royal magic, without knowing how? The faculty of awe remains intact, for all that the royal story in recent years has taken a sordid turn. There were scandals enough in centuries past, from the sneaky little adulteries of Katherine Howard to the junketings of the Prince Regent to the modern-day mischief of Mrs Simpson. But a new world began, I think, in 1980, with the discovery that Diana, the future Princess of Wales, had legs. You will remember how the young Diana taught for a few hours a week at a kindergarten called Young England, and when it was first known that she was Charles’s choice of bride, the press photographed her, infants touchingly gathered around; but they induced her to stand against the light, so in the resulting photograph the nation could see straight through her skirt. A sort of licentiousness took hold, a national lip-smacking. Those gangling limbs were artlessly exposed, without her permission. It was the first violation.
The title of "My Last Duchess" reveals how the Duke, although being married to her, makes no personal connection to the Duchess and sees her as a title not a lover or wife. The work ˜Last' implies how he obviously has thoughts on getting remarried because it does not say final and we can deduce that he is now ready for the next duchess. This shows us how to him his wife was merely an abject and their marriage was one of convenience not one of love.
I think that the way the Duke launches straight into describing the portrait, by saying ˜that's my last Duchess painted on the wall', shows how he is a controlling character because he doesn't give the visitor time to speak. We also learn only now does he really appreciate that the art is good, with the quote ˜I call that piece a wonder, now', perhaps implying that his dislike for the duchess had clouded his view of the painting. It could also show how the Duke can only see her beauty now she's dead, as he is no longer paranoid about other men's perspective. Only now appreciating her physical attractiveness rather than thinking about it as a curse. It could also suggest how he only cares about the materialistic items as he gloats ˜Fra Pandolf's hands worked busily all day' perhaps trying to impress his guest with this artist.
Further down the dramatic monologue we can see how even after death the Duke still wants to control her. This is proved in the line ˜since not puts by the curtain drawn for you but I' showing how only he is allowed to witness ˜the depth and passion of its [her] earnest glance'. This suggests how he is still overridden with jealousy and enjoys the power of finally being able to control who receive her smiles. Personally I think this could show how the Duke is proving his succession, and is sending a warning to people by making sure people understand he will always be victorious. It could also show how the Duke wants vengeance for the embarrassment she caus...