• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Compare and Contrast George Herbert's 'Love' with Donne's 'Holy Sonnet'

Extracts from this document...


Compare and Contrast George Herbert's 'Love' with Donne's 'Holy Sonnet' (TGR) The very opening word of John Donne's "Death be not proud" is "Death", he is directly challenging death, whereas Herbert's first word is "Love". This creates a binary opposition as the two words are complete opposites. There is also a clear difference in the rhyming schemes. John Donne uses Petrarchan sonnet as it is the normal conventional scheme. This conveys Donne's defiant and determined attitude as he knows exactly what he wants and how he feels. This is shown through the imperative Donne uses in the opening line "Death be not proud". Also we see his boldness and defiant tone when he uses strong stresses at the beginning "mighty" and die". ...read more.


Donne later begins to pity "Death" as he uses the adjective "poor" to describe death. Once Donne has said this we see that the tension disappear and he relaxes as he starts to use imagery. Paradox Donne and Herbert share similar attitudes. We see this portrayed in the way that both men use abstract nouns "Death" and "love" two powerful entities that can not be proved. We see Agape (unconditional love) through Herbert's "love" via the semantic field of religion. This is clear to see when he uses the nouns "Soul" and "sin". The very opening line of "love" suggests Herbert is talking to Jesus "Love bade me welcome: yet my soul drew back". ...read more.


Donne breaks the iambic pentameter towards the end on the Sonnet when he says "Thou art slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men". On the other hand Herbert keeps the rhythm of the poem the equal. Donne also uses ellipsis in two instances of his Sonnet "Much pleasure; than from thee much more must flow" and "Rest of their bones, and soul's delivery". Also Donne uses the inferior pronoun "thou" when approaching death, however Herbert uses the objective personal pronoun "me" to describe the effect of love on him. The poet in fact personifies death, speaking directly to Death as if it were a person. He accuses Death of having absolutely nothing to boast about because, in the end, Death has no power whatever. Although Herbert seems accept love and does not challenge it "So I did sit and eat". ?? ?? ?? ?? Sara Mall ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Love Poetry section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Love Poetry essays

  1. Medieval Literature 2: Testament of Cresseid

    It is certain that the poet's narrator feels that the gods are overly harsh towards Cresseid; he remarks: O cruell Saturne, fraward and angrie, Hard is thy dome and to malitious! On fair Cresseid quhy hes thow na mercie, Quhilk was sa sweit, gentill and amorous?

  2. John Donne 'A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning'.

    Even though the centre foot does not appear to move with the other foot, Donne says, it 'doth' subtly rotate in a parallel movement; equally, the fixed foot is irrevocably bound to the unfixed, as 'It leans, and harkens after it,/And grows erect, as it comes home.'

  1. Critical Analysis:The Good Morrow by John Donne.

    The use of a conceit, a type of metaphor or simile, is typical of Donne. He employs it as an image of comparison extended throughout the whole of the poem, establishing a relationship between two different things. However, in a conceit it is the striking nature or strangeness of the comparison which is important.

  2. 'Comparing The Imagery, Language And Relationships In Holy Sonnet 1 To Those In Holy ...

    He is full of fear that he will be cast out by God and as a sinner he is often tempted by "our old subtle foe"; the devil. He simply asks for God's grace to forgive him his sins and to pull his "iron heart" towards Him like a magnet and give him forgiveness and peace.

  1. Comparing Uphill by Christina Rosetti with Love by George Herbert.

    Rosetti was equally religious, rejecting the man she loved for not sharing her religious beliefs. Despite these similarities, the poets were born almost two hundred and fifty years apart and therefore writing poetry for different audiences. From reading the poems I find Rosetti's poetic style tends toward the simple, the

  2. Compose and Contrast the two heroes in ‘The Sextons Hero’ by Elizabeth Gaskell and ...

    You know of the woman's bad breath by the fact that the Curate blocks the tube so that the odour can't be smelt ' ..his finest cambric handkerchief.. no longer able to endure the odour he lightly dropped the handkerchief into the bell of the tube.'.

  1. John Donne 'The Sunne Rising'.

    Finally, however, the poet takes pity upon the sun, who has clearly been living in a world of delusion for a long time. He says 'In that the world's contracted thus,' reduced to the size of one bed in one room, the aged sun need no longer worry about warming

  2. Through a close analysis of language, structure and theme, compare and contrast the poets' ...

    Throughout the poem John Donne seems to compare himself to the flea. He is persistent in his argument and irritating, this portrays himself as a replicate of a flea, just trying to get what he wants. In the first stanza John Donne is narrating to the reader.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work