Where Does The Old Man In The Sea Take Place Maurya – An Overall Discussion

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Maurya – An Overall Discussion

Maurya, a woman in her eighties, is one of the four characters in the play ‘Riders to the Sea’ by John Millington Synge. The whole story revolves around him, telling about his tragic history. Her great endurance and courage in the most interesting parts of life reaches the level of a true heroine of the play. Now let’s take a closer look at Maurya.

At the very beginning of the play we see that, Maurya has already lost four of his sons and now he is waiting to exhume the body of the fifth, Michael, who has been missing for nine days and receive his body. As they say; “…if Michael is washed, tomorrow morning, or the next morning, or every morning of the week, by the grace of God.”

Now, Bartley is the only living child of his family.

Actually, Maurya is a very unfortunate mother, because she had to watch the death of her husband, her father-in-law and other members of her family. She had to raise her children on earth without the help of other men in the family. As they say; “I had a husband, and a husband’s father, and six children in this house – six good husbands, although it was a difficult birth that I had with each of them … the wind, and it is often found on the shore of Gregory of golden mouth…”

When Maurya is facing a big problem to raise his sons in the country, he should have been with him to help him through difficulties and hardships. As a mother, she once had many wishes for sons, but all in vain. We can feel his deep sorrow and pain from his words; “In a big country old people leave things behind them to their sons and children, but in this place it is young men who leave things to old people.”

Maurya, like many other mothers, takes great care of her sons and prays to the Almighty to help her children. In his own words; “…God almighty have mercy on Bartley’s life, and Michael’s life and the lives of sheamen and patch, and Stephen and Shawn…”

Also, he tried to dissuade Bartley from going to the big country to sell a few horses at a cattle show. After losing five sons, no mother would allow her son to go to sea in bad weather. As they say; “If you had a hundred horses, or 1,000 horses, what is the value of 1,000 horses for a child who has only one child?”

We see that, Maurya feels the danger of his son. So he says; “It’s hard. We’ve been waiting for the day when you’ll be drowned with the rest. How can I live with the girls I have, and I’m an old man looking for a grave?”

Again, he predicts the future of his son which will later be confirmed. “He’s gone now, God save us, and we’ll never see him again.”

Here, we find a great similarity between Oedipus and Maurya. Maurya knows the future like Oedipus, but Oedipus learns his future from an oracle while Maurya knows from his own experiences. Maurya, like many other women on the island, has superstitions. We explain this in his various expressions. As they say; “Bartley came first on the red mere, and I tried to say ‘God speed you’ but something choked my voice…”

After returning from the fountain, he announces Bartley’s death because he saw Michael’s ghost on a gray pony behind Bartley sitting on a red mare. It’s nothing but magic.

At the end of the play we can see that, the humility and courage of Maurya is irrevocably lost. He is afraid, as long as Bartley is alive and tries to change his fate but to no avail. So when Bartley’s body is taken home she turns into a fearless lady and challenges the sea. “They’re all gone now, and there’s nothing more the sea can do for me…” In Tragedy, Sea Riders, Synge’s canvas is small but the scenes are vast, varied and deep. . Its placement may be regional but its appeal is universal. The story can be a real experience of any family, anywhere in the world living on the shores of the sea where the sons grow up and embrace death in the sea at an early age, thus leaving the old mother helpless and alone like Maurya.

We see in this drama that a storm of misery and pain has come upon Maurya, but he shows great patience, endurance and patience to spare him from the calamity. As they say; “What more could we want? No man can live forever, and we must be satisfied.”

Finally, we can say, Maurya is a unique creation of Synge. He is “so stable and so important in his nature that even if he defeats him he is still himself” as Daniel cookery says.

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