Jealousy is one of the key links and themes both poems have. The duke’s jealousy being he didn’t find appropriate the way his duchess would flirt with other males when they gave her compliments maybe because he found she was “Too easily impressed” or maybe the fact in which “she thanked men-good” for these compliments (i. e. sexual favors)
While in “Porphyria’s lover” It seems as if his lover is cheating on her spouse in this making him the mistress (or should I say himtress ) and the angers him that she won’t leave her lover for him “too weak for all her endeavor…. o set its struggling passions free from pride, and vainer, to dissever & give herself to me” making him jealous. Leading to why both males were jealous; in both poems both males are trying to posses the love of the woman. The duke has a beautiful portrait painted of his duchess smile and glance, the same glance & smile she gives out when “too easily impresses” he has this portrait hung & hidden be hide a curtain which only he draws to show others.
Since none puts by the curtain I have drawn for you but I” he does this so that he can keep this smile & glance for himself he doesn’t just want anybody just to see it, by this now he can control who can see it possess it. Just the same as the male in porphhyria’s lover; he does want to share porphyria love with another man he wants it for himself. He wants it so she leaves her other lover, but when he did get a taste of what it would be like “Happy and proud; at last I knew porphyria worshipped me” He then decides to preserve it, posses it in the only way he knew how by killing her.
Death playing its role in both poems as another link; the murder in the last duchess being cold callus murder yet the one in porphhyria’s being one of love & affection. Porphyrias murder an act to preserve the moment “that moment she was mine” passionate in the sense of the way she was murdered “three times her little throat around and strangled her. No pain felt she” suggesting he didn’t want her to fell any pain.
Unlike the death in “my last duchess” where it was more callus “I gave commands then all smiles stopped together” (noticing he says smiles meaning the one he tried to posses. ) He did this not just because of her flirting acts but because of the way it was bringing his “nine hundred years old name” down. But instead of saying something to her, oh no no he felt to proud to say any thing “E’en then would be some stooping; and I choose never to stoop”.
Him being the dominant person in the relationship and all. Finally leading the last link dominance. Both males thought what they did appropriate being the dominant males. Well in porphyries not until the end of the poem; form the beginning of the relationship its was her who was dominant “she part my arm about her waist and made her smooth white shoulder bare” quite odd don’t you think as its normally the male to make the moves.
Plus normally it is males who usually cheat or have mistress not the female. It isn’t until the end he takes lead “I propped her head up as before” (he talking about when she was taking lead) “only this time me shoulder bore” This is what the Dukes all for being dominant, you might say he boasts about it “Count your masters know munificence is ample warrant that no just pretence of mine for downy will be disallowed.
It is as if he see her as one of his antiques or objects (linked to picture hanging on wall -antique) He finally ends with the statue of Neptune as a metaphor to men taming women; which is idealistic as the sea horse is so small & the Greek God is huge. Both men thinking what they did just and right the duke using the statue & in porphhyria’s the male ending on “and yet God has not said a word”