"Beauty is truth, truth beauty,—that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know."
It’s still a matter of intense critical debate as to whether or not these lines are intended ironically. (IS beauty truth, and vice versa? Is that really ALL we need to know?) There’s even disagreement as to how much of these lines the urn is “saying,” i.e., whether the quotation marks should go around both lines or just “Beauty is truth, truth beauty.” These are the kind of questions that keep the world steadily supplied with English Ph.D. dissertations.
To help improve the meaning of these lyrics, visit “Ode on a Grecian Urn” by John Keats and leave a comment on the lyrics box