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

Wordsworth and Milton, Sonnets and poems.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Poetry Coursework Sonnets are poems that have fourteen lines that usually have a recognized rhyming scheme. A sonnet generally has two sections; with the first section normally having eight lines and the second section having six. The rhythm in each line of the sonnet can also apply with sonnet traditions and the syllables (which is counted in feet) can define which tradition it is - French, Italian or English. Sonnets were commonly written in the sixteenth to eighteenth century and often written to express emotions of happiness, sadness, and love or written for someone in particular by request. I have chosen to study three of William Wordsworth's sonnets and one by John Milton. The poems I am going to study by William Wordsworth are: 'Composed Upon Westminster Bridge', 'To Lady Fitzgerald, In her Seventieth Year' and 'Composed On a May Morning'. I have chosen to study John Milton's 'Sonnet to the Nightingale'. 'Composed Upon a May Morning' is Wordsworth's view of London from Westminster Bridge. It was written in the early morning when not many people were around and the city seemed 'asleep'. The poet writes what he saw - "Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie...Open unto the fields, and to the sky;". In 'Composed On a May Morning' Wordsworth again describes what he sees, but in this poem it is early on a May morning, in the countryside, watching the surrounding nature. ...read more.

Middle

Both poets have observed nature carefully, to write in detail there emotions of happiness, delight and enjoyment which are shown in these poems. In 'Composed Upon Westminster Bridge' Wordsworth has written about the buildings surrounding Westminster Bridge, and how they are "...so touching in its majesty:", "beauty", "silent, bare", "...bright and glittering...", "beautifully", "splendour", "...never felt, a calm so deep!" and "sweet". These words all give the poem an upbeat tone. The mood of this poem is cheerful, Wordsworth describes the emptiness of the City but shows that in its bareness, he can see its beauty at its best. In 'Composed On a May Morning' Wordsworth again writes with an upbeat tone, he is enjoying watching the lambs and delighting in their exuberance. He describes what they are doing, how they are sitting by their mothers "Couch near their dams..." and running around "...wherever he may run". Wordsworth uses joyful language throughout the poem "heavenly guide", "joy", "shining", and "pleasures". The language in 'Sonnet to the Nightingale' that makes it upbeat is "...fresh hopes...", "...Lover's heart dost fill,", "...jolly Hours...", "propitious", "Thy liquid notes...", "...success in love.". But after the sixth line the poem is not so joyful, Milton writes sorrowfully, "Foretell my hopeless doom..." and "As thou from year to year hast sung too late". Wordsworth's "To Lady Fitzgerald, In Her Seventieth Year" is a cheery and affectionate poem. ...read more.

Conclusion

'Composed On a May Morning', 'Sonnet to the Nightingale' and 'Composed Upon Westminster Bridge" follow the Petrarchan tradition with lines that rhyme 'a b b a a b b a' and the remaining six lines having two different rhymes. "To Lady Fitzgerald, In Her Seventieth Year" does not follow any recognisable rhyming scheme that I know of. All four sonnets follow the English tradition of having ten feet per line. The rhythm and rhyme affect the poems because they are all positive and they are all upbeat. 'Composed On a May Morning' and 'Sonnet to the Nightingale' are similar poems because both poets talk of surrounding nature that can only be watched at certain times of the year or day. Wordsworth watched the lambs in May and Milton listens to the nightingales at night. Both poets also talk about the presence of a God or gods, Wordsworth writes "Why to God's goodness cannot We be true,". Both 'Composed Upon Westminster Bridge' and 'Composed On a May Morning' have two sections where the first section finishes on the eighth line, which is traditional for sonnets. 'To Lady Fitzgerald, In Her Seventieth Year' first section finishes on the ninth line. John Milton's 'Sonnet to the Nightingale' first section finishes in the middle of the seventh line. While William Wordsworth has kept to the traditional way of writing the sonnets I have studied I think John Milton is a more effective writer because he has used rich vocabulary to show his emotions of love and has compared it with something the reader can relate to. ...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 William Wordsworth 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 William Wordsworth essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    Discuss the way in which Wordsworth and Heaney present nature and rural life in ...

    4 star(s)

    This is a very obvious contrast to the despondent mood at the beginning of the poem. In this initial account of the daffodils, Wordsworth personifies them with words such as "fluttering" and, "dancing" to describe their movements and characteristics. These verbs also convey the impression of a light breeze, which

  2. Peer reviewed

    William Wordsworth, known as one of the first generation of romantic poets lived from ...

    4 star(s)

    The dancing motion of the daffodils could be linked back to Dorothy's Grassmere Journals- 'and the rest tossed and reeled and danced'. The first stanza concludes in rhyming couplets bringing the climax of the first stanza to a conclusion. In this poem each stanza seems to be based on an element of nature.

  1. How does Wordsworth explore knowledge and nature?

    'Bring with you a heart that watches and receives'. Wordsworth wants people to stop thinking and start feeling, to accept things and 'enjoy' the more 'important' things in life. Wordsworth explores nature using key images, by portraying it as powerful, God-like, teaching and protective - 'mother earth' and personifies it - ''her fair works did Nature link/The human soul

  2. Compare the poems for childhood and parenting

    that he must care about everyone but especially children, as they are all individuals, who should not be ruined by logic and rationality. Like We are Seven, Anecdote for Fathers explores the nature of wisdom in children and adults. Similarly it is written in quatrains with 3 iambic tetrameters and a final iambic trimester, rhyming abab.

  1. London fete and composed upon Westminster Bridge. I am going to be comparing two ...

    calm he feels " ne'er saw,ne'er felt a calm so deep" Both of the poems structures are written in parts. A London fete is in 3rd person and this shows that it is less personal because when people write in third person it is normally a story.

  2. Compare the works of William Wordsworth and R L Thomas showing whether or not ...

    This poem asks questions to the reader and points out the reality of homelessness. The poem makes evaluate their life and be grateful but also guilty of their supposedly 'rich' lives (compared to the 'tramp') and requires thought as it contains a lot of metaphors.

  1. Explore the Romantic Aspects of At Least Four of the Poems That You Have ...

    This gives an indication, before reading the poem that the poet is talking about escapism and is exasperated with a certain situation. The words "too much" show this evidently. Wordsworth mentions "nature" but does not dwell on it. He says "Little we see in nature that is ours".

  2. R.S Thomas and William Wordsworth. Compare and Contrast the works of two poets who ...

    'Earth has not anything to show more fair:' The predominant emotion is of uttermost delight. He expresses his appreciation of the peacefulness of the morning nature. The atmosphere the poem conveys is pleasant and of a soothing nature. This due to the fact that he's a romantic poet.

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