William Shakespeare 's Sonnet 116 Essay

1672 Words Nov 19th, 2015 7 Pages
Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 116” describes the true meaning of love and how it is the highest level of human activity. This sonnet shows how Shakespeare perceives the concept of love and marriage. The poem is not a normal declaration of love, but a definition and demonstration of love. It portrays the meaning of true love through the description of a series of elaborate images. Shakespeare is trying to embody the idea that love is essential. He claims that the central factor of love is truth and fidelity, which is rooted in the mind. The love that Shakespeare describes is a love that is beyond the highest level of human activity. This love is an abstract idea of the mind and soul and is immune to the physical, behavioral, or emotional weaknesses that threaten it (Livingston 3589). Shakespeare’s view of love being an everlasting mindset gives the poem a theme that is focused not only on the physical side of love but also the abstract side of love. He describes how love is undying and can overcome any obstacle. This idea of love is explained in the following: “Love is absolutely secure against the external assault. In particular, it holds firm against the ravages of time. Since the poem begins by dissociating love from the limits of time, this should not be surprising, especially since the marriage service insists on the possibility of love surviving time and its consequence, change. So strong is the popular belief that love is rooted in physical attractiveness, however, that the…

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