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The Comparisons of Sonnets

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English Coursework The Comparisons of Sonnets I have chosen three sonnets to study and compare, these are: "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" by William Shakespeare. "My mistress'eyes are nothing like the sun" by William Shakespeare and "How do I love thee?" by Elizabeth Barrett Browning. To begin with I shall analyse the first poem "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" and then come back and relate it to the other two. I shall then also link it back in with the other two, then after make a clearer comparison. Shakespeare's Sonnet XVIII Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate, Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer's lease hath all too short a date, Sometimes too hot the eye of heaven shines, And often is his ...read more.


This is because he begins to tell his lover how the many imperfections of a Summer's day cannot touch his lover's superior qualities, and his life, and the memory of it, is an eternal summer. Also, he has changed into the standard by which true beauty can and should be judged. The poet starts the sonnet by asking his lover the question "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?", comparing him to a summer's day in itself is delightful or very pleasing, but he then goes on to build upon the image of his lover as a perfect being by stating the faults of a summer's day compared to the beauty and excellence of his lover. He tells him of how the summer winds can be too rough and the weather can change quickly without warning compared with the temperate and calm ...read more.


The poet's only answer to such profound joy and beauty is to ensure that his lover be forever in human memory, saved from the ultimate oblivion that accompanies death. He achieves this through his verse, believing that, as history writes itself; his lover will become one with time as anyone who reads his words will build up their own picture of incredible beauty. Therefore fashion and changing views will never mean that his lover's beauty will never die and his words will always bring across the beauty of his lover. The last two lines reaffirms Shakespeare's hope that as long as there is breath in mankind, his poetry will too live on, and ensure the immortality of his lover's beauty, "So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, So long lives this and this gives life to thee". Joe Cole 11V GCSE Coursework ...read more.

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