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Compare and Contrast "To His Coy Mistress" and "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love".

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Richard Dorman November 03 Compare and Contrast "To His Coy Mistress" and "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love" Without any doubt, there are many similarities and differences between these two love poems. Born in 1621, Andrew Marvell wrote "To His Coy Mistress" a cleverly written poem based on the phrase "carpe diem" or "seize the day." It was an attempt to persuade a girl to sleep with him. Christopher Marlowe, was the predecessor of Shakespeare, wrote the poem 'The Passionate Shepherd to His Love' which is a romantic poem about a man never wanting to be apart from his woman. He pleads for the woman's love by offering his eternal commitment and a beautiful life. The two poems use very different arguments to try to persuade the woman to do similar things. These two arguments are close to being completely the opposite even though they are trying to achieve the same thing. Marlowe's poem does not have a clear argument but it roughly is, if you agree to come with me then everything will be good from now on. He wants "his love" to come and live with him. The speaker says "come live with me" and "we will all the pleasures". ...read more.


The structure of the two poems is very different. Andrew Marvell's poem has three main parts but Christopher Marlowe's is separated into seven stanzas. These two types allow each poem to flow and suit the words being said. There is a key word in Marvell's poem and it is "but". Halfway down the poem the speaker says "but" meaning however, if you do not come with me then you will remain a virgin forever. On the other hand, Marlowe's poem does not use the word but it leaves the choice totally up to his love. Again this fits in with the structure of the poems because there is no sudden change in the Passionate Shepherd, it remains the same all the way through, but Marvell's is spilt in three and changes at each point. Both of the poems are written in rhyming couplets, which gives the effect of the poem flowing. This can be associated with love. On two occasions in the coy mistress poem the rhyme breaks down. On line 23 and 24 "lie" and "eternity" are placed together, clearly these do not rhyme. ...read more.


This can suggest a lot about the two poets personalities, but might just have been the method they chose to write the poems. From the two poems, I can make several assumptions about the characters of the speakers. I think that the speaker in the "Passionate Shepherd" poem would be a very reliable person and would care and love his woman. The offer he promises to the woman and the things he would provide, such as the "buckles of the purest gold" show this. However, the other speaker is very dissimilar. I would expect him to be unreliable, very clever and cunning and to have short relationships with women that have been impressed by his flattery. I come to this judgment; by the conniving methods he uses to persuade his women and his basic argument of wanting to go to bed with the woman. Clearly, the poems are very similar but have many differences as well. I think that the "Coy Mistress" poem is very devious and well written, but the "Passionate Shepherd" is a very simplistic poem that uses the woman's appeal to wanting to have the best and to be happy. I prefer the first of these two poems because of the hidden reasons throughout it and also the different methods the speaker uses. ...read more.

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3 star(s)

There is some effective analysis in this essay, though some of the conclusions drawn are not supported by the texts. The essay writer demonstrates some useful insights.

Paragraph and sentence construction are generally controlled quite well and lexis is mostly adequate for the task.

3 stars

Marked by teacher Jeff Taylor 07/08/2013

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