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Compare how love is portrayed in Sonnet 18,

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Introduction

Katherine Doyle English Poetry Coursework Compare how love is portrayed in Sonnet 18, "The Sun Rising" and "To His Coy Mistress". The three poems studied for this, all contain material describing love for a woman. Among this theme are other underlying messages being projected to attentive readers but the theme which will most probably be initially remarked upon or noticed by someone reading these poems for the first time will be their dedication to the female form. Sonnet 18 by Shakespeare begins with what seems like an ode to a special person, we can assume is a women. Shakespeare uses terms such as "lovely" and "darling" in order to describe the image which he wants to portray of this particular person. These descriptions initially seem entirely complimentary towards the subject seemingly implying that she is full of love. However, the word "temperate" is also used in the same phrase as "lovely". Temperate meaning not too hot or too cold, seems to imply that the subject being discussed is average. These too words used side by side seem to imply a contradiction within that particular phrase. The word "temperate" in this phrase could also be describing the subject's personality as average, nothing special. This would make the phrase quite a complete description if that were the case, as we would have the physical description as "lovely" in juxtaposition with the description of the personality as perfectly ok, average, nothing special. ...read more.

Middle

The tone of this poem is confusing on first impressions and it is only when reading it more clearly and deciphering the contexts that we can make the assumption that this poem is in fact not entirely complimentary towards its subject which it initially seems to be on superficial impressions. The subject seems to be described as far inferior to what he or she is imagined or made out to be. In the poem, Shakespeare uses Old English terms such as "thou art" instead of you are, "thou hast" instead of you are, "thou owest" instead of you owe, "thou wander'st" instead of you wonder. This is a particular form of "you" used when speaking to someone close. I think that the message of this poem seems to be that people are not always what they are made out to be and may not be as beautiful in reality as they seemed to be on first impressions. I beleive Shakespeare's opinions within this poem could be described as slightly arrogant and unashamedly uncomplimentary. He seems to be telling this person to be wary of their appearance, as it is only skin deep. Another interpretation of this could be that the subject is described as more wonderful than a summer's day in many ways, and although a day will always end, your beauty will be live on forever because this poem has made you immortal by its description. ...read more.

Conclusion

The rhyming pattern within it is as follows: -abab -cdcd -efef -a couplet The last two lines are a couplet, this provides a sharp contrast to the rest of the poem which has abab rhyming patterns. This couplet at the end helps to draw the entire poem to a conclusion. The poem is begun with the words "Shall I ...?", this is in effect a question which will be somewhat answered throughout the course of the poem. The question will not be answered immediately and this lends a feeling of suspense and anticipation to its reading. We are, throughout the poem, reading the authors thoughts, contemplating at his thought process and evolution. In the poem "The Sun Rising", we explore similar themes to those seem in Sonnet 18. We have a comparaison of women to nature and love to nature. We also have the process of questioning in the poem, although in "The Sun Rising", the answer in already formulated within the question unlike in Sonnet 18 where the answer is among the rest of the poem. The construction of both these poems is extremely different. The poem begins with the phrase "Busy old fool, unruly sun,". "Busy" is a word which has a very explosive sound when pronounced due to the harsh tone of the B. In this phrase it seems to represent a nosy person whereas "unruly Sun" seems to represent something very strong and difficult to control. ...read more.

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