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Figurative Language of Shakespeare’s Selected Sonnets: 18,33,55, and 130

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William Shakespeare wrote one hundred fifty-four sonnets. A sonnet is a form of lyric poetry with fourteen lines and a specific rhyme scheme. (Lyric poetry presents the deep feelings and emotions of the poet as opposed to poetry that tells a story or presents a witty observation. ) . The topic of most sonnets written in Shakespeare’s time is love–or a theme related to love. …….. Poets usually wrote their sonnets as part of a series, with each sonnet a sequel to the previous one, although many sonnets could stand alone as separate poems.

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Sonnets afforded their author an opportunity to show off his ability to write memorable lines. In other words, sonnets enabled a poet to demonstrate the power of his genius in the same way that an art exhibition gave a painter a way to show off his special techniques. ……. Shakespeare addresses Sonnets 1 through 126 to an unidentified young man with outstanding physical and intellectual attributes. The first seventeen of these urge the young man to marry so that he can pass on his superior qualities to a child, thereby allowing future generations to enjoy and appreciate these qualities when the child becomes a man.

In Sonnet 18, Shakespeare alters his viewpoint, saying his own poetry may be all that is necessary to immortalize the young man and his qualities. ……. In Sonnets 127 through 154, Shakespeare devotes most of his attention to addressing a mysterious “dark lady”–a sensuous, irresistible woman of questionable morals who captivates the poet. References to the dark lady also appear in previous sonnets (35, 40, 41, 42), in which Shakespeare reproaches the young man for an apparent liaison with the dark lady.

The first two lines of Sonnet 41 chide the young man for “those petty wrongs that liberty commits / when I am sometime absent from thy heart,” a reference to the young man’s wrongful wooing of the dark lady. The last two lines, the rhyming couplet, further impugn the young man for using his good looks to attract the dark lady. In Sonnet 42, the poet charges, “thou dost love her, because thou knowst I love her. ” ……. Shakespeare wrote his sonnets in London in the 1590’s during an outbreak of plague that closed theaters and prevented playwrights from staging their dramas. …… Generally, Shakespeare’s sonnets receive high praise for their exquisite wording and imagery and for their refusal to stoop to sentimentality. Readers of his sonnets in his time got a taste of the greatness that Shakespeare exhibited later in such plays as Hamlet, Macbeth, King Lear, Othello, and The Tempest. Sonnets 138 and 144 were published in 1599 in a poetry collection entitled The Passionate Pilgrime[Pilgrim]. The other sonnets were published in 1609 in Shake-speares[Shakespeare’s] Sonnets.

It is possible that the 1609 sequence of sonnets is out of its original order ……. The Shakespearean sonnet (also called the English sonnet) has three four-line stanzas (quatrains) and a two-line unit called a couplet. A couplet is always indented; both lines rhyme at the end. The meter of Shakespeare’s sonnets is iambic pentameter (except in Sonnet 145). The rhyming lines in each stanza are the first and third and the second and fourth. In the couplet ending the poem, both lines rhyme. All of Shakespeare’s sonnets follow the same rhyming pattern.

Cite this Figurative Language of Shakespeare’s Selected Sonnets: 18,33,55, and 130

Figurative Language of Shakespeare’s Selected Sonnets: 18,33,55, and 130. (2016, Oct 22). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/figurative-language-of-shakespeares-selected-sonnets-183355-and-130/

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