Armytage, tells us the life of Margaret, specifically tells us about the tragic events that follow after her husbands disappearance. The disappearance of her husband is representing the lack of employments, for the people who worked in the Cottage Industry due to the increasing production by the factories during the Industrial Revolution. Margaret’s character seems like she is a symbol that represents an entire group of people. She would represent the group that suffered due to the rise of the industrial revolution. She symbolizes what it’s like for a person to be excluded from a community.
At the beginning of the Poem, Armytage describes Margaret and her husband as hardworking people, they are happy despite their hardships. Their family consists of Margaret, her husband Robert, and her two young children. Robert was determined in his work. He would be “up and busy at his loom…Ere the last star had vanished” (begin his work before the sun rose (122-125)) Although the life of Margaret’s family is not exactly comfortable, there are described as living “in peace and comfort” (131) The cottage Industry was hard work, but this was the only means for peasants to make profit. “Two blighting seasons” and a “plague of war” are all it takes to see “many rich/sunk down as in a dream among the poor, / and of the poor did many cease to be” (134, 136, 141-143) It’s implied that the industrialization contributes to the descending conditions of the peasants, along with crummy harvests. Now with the absence of her husband and continuing unemployment, Margaret’s life is declining in a state of confusion, isolation, and neglect. This decline is demonstrated when Armytage visits Margaret at her cottage. Margret attempted to bear the adversities when her husband was still there she “went struggling on through those calamitous years/ with cheerful hope” (147-148). But now that her husband is gone