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Pre-1914 Poetry William Shakespeare (1562-1616) Sonnet 29, and Sonnet 130.

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Introduction

Regina Forrester 4thNovember, 2002 GCSE ENLISH Pre-1914 Poetry William Shakespeare (1562-1616) SONNET 29 SONNET 130 Compare and contrast Shakespeare's attitude to his mistress in these two sonnets "Will you then write me a sonnet in praise of my beauty?" Margaret Much A Do 5.2 "It is the east, and Juliet is the sun" Romeo Romeo and Juliet 2.2 Shakespeare is renowned not only for his ability in writing plays, but also for his talent in writing sonnets. Shakespeare wrote over one hundred and fifty sonnets, most of which concern love and affection. In this essay, we will be looking at two of his famous sonnets, Sonnet 29 and Sonnet 130. Shakespeare's description in Sonnet 29 gives us a clear insight of what people expected to read in the sixteenth century. ...read more.

Middle

He uses a simile for the sun's uplifting effect on the lark. Sonnet 29 conveys the poet's conventional admiration for his loved one ("That then I scorn to change my state with kings"); he pays her an exaggerated compliment. As mentioned earlier, most of Shakespeare's works are conventionally written. However, Sonnet 130 is somewhat eccentric. In comparison to Sonnet 29, Sonnet 130 is also written by a man who feels a deep affection for his mistress. Shakespeare commences Sonnet 130 by subverting the convention of love poems ("My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun "); the poet does not pay compliments to his mistress. The sonnet continues describing his loved one ("If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head"); he is indicating that she is not an attractive woman. ...read more.

Conclusion

There is a radical difference between Sonnet 29 and Sonnet 130. Sonnet 29 expresses the poet's socially acceptable appreciation for his mistress. He makes an overstated, flattering remark and gives us a description of the uplifting effect on him of her approval. However, Sonnet 130 counteracts Sonnet 29. The writer rejects the notion that his mistress is physically attractive, but afterwards gives us an account of his feelings for her. Sonnet 29 and Sonnet 130 have many differences, but their principle is similar. The sonnets are written to praise their mistresses. The way Shakespeare constructed Sonnet 29 gives us an idea of the expectations of the society in the sixteenth century. However, we can also learn that sonnets such as Sonnet 130 are created to counteract people's preconceptions. A large number of love poems were written in that period, but most of them had the same purpose....to flatter men's mistresses. 1 ...read more.

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