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The Perseption of Parent - Child Relationships In the Sonnets By George Eliot and Sir Walter Ralegh.

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Introduction

THE PERSEPTION OF PARENT/CHILD RELATIONSHIPS IN THE SONNETS BY GEORGE ELIOT AND SIR WALTER RALEGH. 'Brother and Sister' by George Eliot and 'Sir Walter Ralegh to his son' by Sir Walter Ralegh are both sonnets on the subject of Children and Parental Relationships. Despite one sonnet being written by a woman and the other by a man, their relationships with their children are very important to them. They are both Shakespearean sonnets, dealing with the aspects of age and experience. George Eliot is writing as a child and what their mother is saying to them, where as Sir Ralegh is writing as a father and what he is saying to his son. It is distinguished that George is writing as a child as her first line says her mother "stroked down my tippet and set my brother's frill " Therefore, this will have to be taken into account when comparing the two sonnets. Both sonnets are similar, as life is being explained - what must and mustn't be done and what to look out for. ...read more.

Middle

He is warning his son that meeting them can ruin a person's life. He is talking from past experience and is warning his son of the dangers. There seems to be no hidden meaning(s) in George Eliot's sonnet, apart from the thought that she may be talking about her innocent childhood, or how she would have liked it to be. There is a rhyme scheme in both sonnets. The last word in every other line rhymes. In 'Brother and Sister': 'ways, gaze' 'elms, realms' 'shade, braid'. In 'Sir Walter Ralegh to his son' : 'far, mar' 'tree, thee' 'not, rot' 'wild, child'. In this sonnet, the last word in each sentence for the cuplet rhyme (pray, day) - where as they do not in George Eliot's sonnet (solemnity, me). George Eliot describes her surrounding nature as something that plays a very important role in her childhood. In contrast to this, the 'wood', the 'weed' and the 'wag' are all part of nature and yet this is the problem, when they all meet. Whilst George Eliot's sonnet discusses the issue of a mother talking to her children, whilst playing and gazing at them, Sir Ralegh's sonnet just talks about the situation - there is no side-track. ...read more.

Conclusion

But in contrast, even if only read for the first time, George Eliot's sonnet is taken seriously and less light-heartedly. Also, the relationship between mother and child in "Brother and Sister" seems more relaxed where as the other poet seems to want to get the talk over and done with - a less easy relationship. The final cuplets in both the sonnets have different meanings. George Eliot describes her overall feelings about nature and what her mother had said to her. "And made a happy strange solemnity, A deep-toned chant from life unknown to me" But, Sir Ralegh's ending cuplet is more formal - a prayer and wish is being made for the safety of the son against the three things. "Then bless thee, and beware, and let us pray, We part not with thee at this meeting day". Both sonnets show that the best is wanted for the child/children from the parent, although both poets describe it in many different ways. When I first read the sonnets, I didn't feel that there was any real meaning to either George Elliot or Sir Walter Ralegh's sonnet. But, on closer examination I have found that is not the case. Both sonnets refer well to the heading of "Parent/ Child Relationships". 3 ...read more.

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