Sir Thomas Wyatt 's The And Sonnet 67 By Edmund Spenser Essay

1649 Words Aug 20th, 2015 7 Pages
Petrarch’s Canzoniere is a volume of 365 sonnets and songs that explore the poet’s desire for a woman who is beautiful but chaste, and therefore unattainable. The speaker’s inability to attain the woman’s love is a common thread weaving throughout these sonnets and songs and gave rise to the concept of Petrarchan love, a theme that many poets have since emulated. Sir Thomas Wyatt’s sonnet Whoso List to Hunt and Sonnet 67 by Edmund Spenser are adaptations of Petrarch’s Canzoniere sonnet, Rima 190, Una candida cerva. Although both poets adhere to concepts of love in their sonnets, they also add variations that reflect the times in which they were composed.
In Una candida cerva, Petrarch employs the metaphorical image of a white doe to describe a beautiful woman Laura; he includes puns on her name to create multiple layers of meaning within the sonnet. In the sonnet the doe stands in the shade of a laurel tree and the derivative of the name Laura is ‘laurus’, the laurel or bay tree, a crown of which is worn by the patron of poets, Apollo. In this doubling, Laura becomes both the love interest of the speaker and a representation of the “poet’s aspiration to win the laurel crown of poetry” (Crone 7), which gives Laura a Neoplatonic spirituality that transcends all earthly virtue and emphasises her distance from the speaker. Wyatt and Spenser shift this visionary landscape of Petrarch’s speaker to the secular field of sport and hunting, they use the Petrarchan conceit of a…

Related Documents