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

Herbert & Donne compared- an inadequate relationship to God

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Poetry Essay - George Herbert "Herbert's poems describe a devotional relationship between man and Creator that is weaker image of human love relationships." Explore and compare. Herbert's is visibly devout and requires very little in-depth reading to realise this. He's so focused on the deliverance of a religious message that he even structures the poem's shape according to the context to the poem, which is obviously indicative of his piousness, but what appears in his poetry is also that despite this devotion, it's never quite enough. The most obvious example of a poem wherein the context is delivered not only through language but very powerfully through structure as well is The Altar, where the poem itself is structured eponymously as an altar. Herbert's rather unusual way of layering his poetry with allusions to what it is about is however undeniably effective in emphasising the clarity of the message and perhaps also as a mean to please God at the same time through the devotion of this literary altar.The Altar, like much of ...read more.

Middle

The stanzas are split into 2 moods, of a happy side and a depressing, morose side. This shows the two sides of the poem and life. Like Herbert, many of John Donne's poems have a religious background, owing to his time as Dean in St. Paul's Cathedral, as well as a wilder side, as he was an adventurous man who sailed and fought in naval battles against Spain. Donne also secretly married the daughter of his boss without permission and inevitably received a lot of criticism for this. Perhaps because of this, Donne wrote many religious and passionate, but at the same time forceful poems. Holy Sonnet 10 is an Iambic Pentameter, and follows an ABBA pattern as opposed to ABAB used by Herbert. However Holy Sonnet 10 does not follow this pattern, as halfway through the poem the pattern changes to CDCD which is the same as Herbert, then however, the final 2 lines are in an E, E pattern which is completely random from the other poems I have studied. ...read more.

Conclusion

But Donne's poetry never comes off quite as lacking in faith, as Herbert's does. In the 7th line, Donne makes a reference to reason ruling man instead of God. Being quite a heretical thought at the time, it is however Biblically rooted -it was believed that it was reason that separated humans from animals and so is human's defining characteristic. Donne goes on to say that reason sometimes fails man and betrays him, but God is always there and will forgive men. This shows Donne's faith in God, which is much the same as Herbert. Donne however seeks accepts the inevitable and gives himself up to God and imprisonment. The whole idea of God imprisoning and ravishing a person is completely paradoxical when God is seen as a forgiving being. To show this, Donne has made the last 2 lines, paradoxes. 'You enthrallmee, never shall be free' and 'ever chast, except you ravishmee'. While Donne is more daring and passionate, he is still more fervent in his belief that God will be there, where Herbert is less certain, evident by his devotion within the poetry that still lacks a sense of drive. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Comparative Essays 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 AS and A Level Comparative Essays essays

  1. The Historyof War Poetry and the works of Wilfred Owen

    Without it, we are no better than 'cattle.' Throughout Owen's sonnet, he contrasts the dignified, public rites that should be accorded to the slain with the ugly reality of being left in the mud to rot. Instead of the peaceful clang of church bells there is the "anger of the

  2. In this essay I am going to compare the following poemsCrossing the Bar and ...

    and insides" Here Roger Mcgough uses puns in order to increase the interaction between him and the audience. In the first poem the poet makes use of extended metaphors. The similarity is that both poets use a range of ways in order to interact with the audience.

  1. Coursework The Choosing

    The writer had a fear 'of superiority at sums.' This is the first point that emphasized to us that they weren't actually equal. So these two girls were equal in every way, except arithmetic, where Mary led. In the second verse we find out that Mary's family had eventually moved to a house with a cheaper rent.

  2. Glasgow Sonnet No1

    'Block' denotes the building, inter alia - it might also be symbolic of the building and its inhabitants being outcast by society. The image created by the metaphor 'Roses of mould' is powerful and effective. The d�cor of the building is unexpected, as the metaphor reveals the walls are covered with fungus, further revealing a theme of neglect and poverty.

  1. The Colour Purple and Margeret Atwood

    Herself. "And us feel so happy. Matter of fact I think this the youngest I ever felt!" What the novel asserts is that people can be weak or strong and gender should not dictate perceptions of qualities that are essentially human. Margaret Atwood's poetry is often symbolic.

  2. I have decided to look at 'God's Grandeur' by G.M Hopkins, 'Death be Not ...

    people have been using his style very widely, even in the present day authors are still using the Shakespearian style sonnet. The earliest of my three sonnets 'Shall I Compare thee to a summer's Day', by Shakespeare is written around 1599.

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