William Blake's

"The Tyger" and "The Lamb"


Songs of Innocence and of Experience, copy Z

[London: Printed by Catherine Blake and William Blake, 1789-1794, 1826]

Below you will find "The Tyger" and "The Lamb" from William Blake's Songs of Innocence and of Experience. Included are both text transcriptions of the poems and links to electronic versions of the Blake plates from which they were derived. The links to the plates will take you to The William Blake Archive at the University of Virginia. Simply use your web browser's "back" button to return to this page. See the notes below for important details on the texts and images.

Note on the texts: Since these texts are transcriptions of Blake's original plates, you may find that their punctuation seems "inconsistent" with most printed versions of Blake's poetry or even with standard written English. This, however, is not necessarily a problem. Rather, it might be considered a strength of this project that it allows students to work with versions of the texts closer to their original form, and with the closest thing available to the original form in the cases where students are to be working with the plates themselves.

Note on the Images: The Blake Archive images may take some time to load; do not panic or click anything when you see a blank page, just wait. More recent web browsers, such as Navigator version 3 and higher and Internet Explorer version 4, should have no problems accessing the images at the Blake Archive. If you have an earlier version of either of these browsers or you are having trouble accessing the images, please click on the link to the "non-Java version" instead.

  "The Lamb"
from Songs of Innocence
  "The Tyger"
from Songs of Experience

  Little Lamb who made thee
  Dost thou know who made thee
Gave thee life & bid thee feed.
By the stream & o'er the mead;
Gave thee clothing of delight,
Softest clothing wooly bright;
Gave thee such a tender voice,
Making all the vales rejoice:
  Little Lamb who made thee
  Dost thou know who made thee

  Little Lamb I'll tell thee,
  Little Lamb I'll tell thee:
He is called by thy name,
For he calls himself a Lamb:
He is meek & he is mild,
He became a little child:
I a child & thou a lamb,
We are called by his name.
  Little Lamb God bless thee.
  Little Lamb God bless thee.

View Blake's plate of "The Lamb"
from Songs of Innocence
View non-Java version


Tyger Tyger. burning bright,
In the forests of the night:
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies.
Burnt the fire of thine eyes!
On what wings dare he aspire!
What the hand, dare sieze the fire?

And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?
What the hammer? what the chain,
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp,
Dare its deadly terrors clasp!

When the stars threw down their spears
And water'd heaven with their tears:
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
Tyger, Tyger burning bright,
In the forests of the night:
What immortal hand or eye,
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

View Blake's plate of "The Tyger"
from Songs of Experience
View non-Java version