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Essay on Compare William Shakespeare’s Sonnets 12 and 73

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Compare William Shakespeare’s Sonnets 12 and 73


William Shakespeare (1564-1616) wrote a group of 154 sonnets between
1592 and 1597, which were compiled and published under the title
'Shakespeare's Sonnets' in 1609. The 154 poems are divided into two
groups, a larger set, consisting of sonnets 1-126 which are addressed
by the poet to a dear young man, the smaller group of sonnets 127-154
address another persona, a 'dark lady'. The larger set of sonnets
display a deliberate sequence, a sonnet cycle akin to that used a
decade earlier by the English poet Phillip Sidney (1554-1586) in
'Astrophel and Stella'. The themes of love and infidelity are dominant
in both sets of poems, in the larger grouping; these themes are
interwoven with symbols of beauty, immortality, and the ravages of
time. Lyrical speculations of poetry's power to maintain bonds of love
and to revere the beloved can also be found in the larger collection
of sonnets.

Due to the great amount of Shakespeare's work and its consistent
quality, his particular style became known as 'the Shakespearean
sonnet form'. A typical Shakespearean sonnet has fourteen lines,
broken down into three quatrains and ending with a rhyming couplet. In
each quatrain a different subject will be conversed and described, the
subject is then changed at the start of each new quatrain. The
quatrain allows the theme of the sonnet to be developed. The ending
couplet allows what was discussed in the forerunning quatrains to be
resolved. A Shakespearean sonnet has the rhyming pattern
ABABCDCDEFEFGG.

Sonnet 12 talks about how time changes the body's image, it also sees
the writer thinking about death quite bluntly. He only seems to see
that life is short and one life must...


... middle of paper ...


...tes of time must go,
Since sweets and beauties do themselves forsake
And die as fast as they see others grow;
And nothing 'gainst Time's scythe can make defence
Save breed, to brave him when he takes thee hence.

Sonnet 73

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruin'd choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou seest the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death's second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see'st the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the death-bed whereon it must expire
Consumed with that which it was nourish'd by.
This thou perceivest, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.


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