The Color White In Shakespeare's Sonnet 99

801 Words 4 Pages
While the use of the color “white” in both Sonnet 12 and 99 represents one of Shakespeare’s most prominent themes: the inevitable concept of time, in Sonnet 12, the narrator, reflects that the only defense against Time’s scythe is having children (leaving behind a legacy), while in Sonnet 99, the narrator condemns four different types of flowers for stealing attributes of his beloved (the Lilies stole the whiteness of his beloved’s hand, for example).
In Sonnet 12, the narrator uses the color “white” to represent the unavoidable effects of time, while using the last two lines as a glimmer of hope that when his beloved is to die, he leaves behind children so that part of him remains there, in the end. The first time the color “white” is used
…show more content…
Much like Sonnet 12, Sonnet 99 also has ties to nature in the form of the narrator condemning the violets, the lilies, the marjorie’s, and the roses for stealing features of his beloved. The violets have stolen his beloved’s smell and color, through when the narrator says, “whence didst thou steal thy sweet that smells/Which on thy soft cheek for complexion dwells” (line 2 and 4). The lilies have stolen the red color from his beloved’s cheek and the whiteness from his beloved’s hand though when the narrator says, “The lily I condemned for thy hand” (lines 6). The marjorie’s have stolen his beloved’s black hair through when the narrator says, “And buds of marjoram had stol’n thy hair” (line 7). And finally the roses have stolen his beloved’s colors: his white color of despair and his red color of shame. The only time the color “white” is used is in line 10 when the narrator says, “A third, nor red, nor white, had stol’n of both.” The word here plays a role in the poems overall meaning because the narrator is saying that the rose has stolen both the blush of his beloved’s cheeks and the whiteness of his skin from the narrator. Likewise, the structure of the poem is written

Related Documents