Much madness is divinest Sense by Emily Dickinson


"Much madness is divinest Sense" is a poem written by Emily Dickinson. In this writing, Dickinson explores what the meaning of "madness" and "sense" truly is. She says that "Assent, and you are sane;", which basically means that sanity is only sanity because the majority of people believe it to be so, but that doesn't mean it is truly "sense".

This poem is written in only one stanza. It has eight lines. The poem is written in pairs where the first line is longer than the second. However, there's one pair that doesn't hold true to it. They are equal in length instead (lines five and six).

Johnson number: 435


Much madness is divinest Sense

Much madness is divinest sense
To a discerning eye;
Much sense the starkest madness.
'T is the majority
In this, as all, prevails.
Assent, and you are sane;
Demur, -- you're straightway dangerous,
And handled with a chain.

Next: My life closed twice before its close
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Literary Movement
19th Century