A Critical Analysis Of William Shakespeare's 'Sonnet XVIII'

1206 Words5 Pages
Andrea C. Quitoriano
EN314: British Literature
Dr. Kelley Bowman
A Critical Analysis of Sonnet XVIII (William Shakespeare)
December 30, 2015


Sonnet XVIII is one of the most famous of William Shakespeare’s works. It is signified to be one of the greatest love poems of all time. Sonnets are uniquely written in iambic pentameter, consisting of four quatrains and a rhyming couplet. Don Paterson states that reading Shakespeare’s sonnets are initially difficult to get close to and are locked as they are in the “carapace of their own proverbialism” (Paterson). Sonnet XVIII focuses on the theme of the facets of nature’s beauty, comparing it to his love’s beauty and the way it is influenced by time. Shakespeare emphasizes on the power of preserving his love’s intriguing beauty through spoken word. It was written in about 1595, and many have rumoured that the poem was addressed to a man. In Britain, a summer day is famous for its vivid sunshine and warmth, since it is usually on the colder side most of the time during the year. The use of imagery of “Summer’s day” has been used to point out the pleasantness and brightness of the “fair youth”. One may think that his love first appeals as radiant, cheerful and mesmerizing as a day in summer. But one can realise Shakespeare becomes scrupulous by stating that his love is “more lovely and more temperate.” Shakespeare starts by expressing his love’s beauty. It is prominent that the physical features are not described and are not
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