Elizabethan Sonnets Essay

This essay has a total of 609 words and 3 pages.

Elizabethan Sonnets

In Elizabethan Age, the sonnets had advanced into a form with new metric and rhyme scheme
that was departing from Petrarchan sonnets. Yet, Elizabethan sonnets still carried the
tradition of Petrarchan conceit. Petrarchan conceit was a figure used in love poems
consisting detailed yet exaggerated comparisons to the lover's mistress that often
emphasized the use of blazon. The application of blazon would emphasize more on the
metaphorical perfection of the mistresses due to the natural objects were created by God,
hence when the mistresses were better than nature, then there would be nothing better than
the mistresses. Sonnet 130 written by William Shakespeare developed into an
anti-Petrarchan position by denying the image of Petrarchan poet's mistresses who always
were ideal and idolized. Any lover's mistress in Petrachan poet's sonnet would expect to
have eyes that vying the sun, lips that are redder than coral, breasts as white as snow,
and hair that shines. Nevertheless, the speaker created his mistress to a contradictory
image of an ideal lover. The speaker insisted that his "mistress' eyes" were "noting like
the sun. Coral" was "far more red than her lips' red" and "if snow be white," then "her
breasts" were "dun." He also commented that "if hairs be wires, black wires" grew "on her
head." Furthermore, her skin was dark and not smooth; her breath was unpleasant too. These
descriptions summed up to an objectionable image of her, which suggested that the speaker
was trying to portray his beloved to a person who was uglier than the rest of the
mistresses. In addition, he described that his "mistress, when she" walked, she treaded
"on the ground" which indicated his mistress was a real woman but not like the ideal
goddess-like or fictional lovers that other poets created. Petrarchan sonnets consisted of
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