Courtly Love In Henry Howard's Sonnet

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Sparks are Breathing
Towards the end of Henry Howard’s sonnet, which embodies the aspects of courtly love such as secrecy, aristocracy, and adulterous actions, the speaker, who harbors love and does not reveal it due to the denial of his lover, declares “Sweet is the death that taketh end by love”. The speaker, who suffers through the inability to display his love, makes this observation while love resides in his heart. This observation reveals the secrecy of courtly love in the sonnet. The love precipitates the speaker’s suffering through revealing himself to the lover, but then retreating to the speaker’s heart. Through this revelation, the speaker must suffer. In Howard’s “Love that doth reign and Live within my thoughts”, the speaker suffers
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Reflecting on himself and the actions of love, the speaker grasps the cowardliness of love when faced with challenges. Once bold, love “[took] his flight” and sulked when faced with opposition. This sulking represents a major theme from courtly love: secrecy. Through love not revealing its face, the secrecy is revealed. The face also is a symbol of the past actions that love undertakes. The earlier soldier like love displayed his authority through human emotions such as the banner, which represents blushing, on the face of the speaker, but through the adversity, love remains docile in the heart. With the ruthless criticism of love’s cowardliness in the first three lines of the sestet, Howard permits love to express its concerns about its timidity. Thus, Howard continues the conceit of the personification of love through love speaking. Love notes that it remains in pain through the guilt of the speaker, and that even though the speaker is suffering due to love, it will remain in the speaker’s heart until death. Howard uses the last line of the sonnet to emphasize the final aspect of courtly love in the sonnet and to resolve the conflict of the pain from love. In the final line, Howard generalizes the poem through the speaker declaring: “Sweet is the death that taketh end by love.” This declaration exemplifies the theme of love as an acceptable way to die. Furthermore, dying of a broken heart become a ritualistic theme throughout literature. This broken heart illustrates the commencement of the ability for men to express emotion in the renaissance and the acceptance of men to become the recipient of being played. Furthermore, the last line of the couplet resolves the conflict through the expression that death through love is a valiant death, and that there are worse ways to

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