Essay on William Shakespeare 's Sonnet 18

827 Words Sep 28th, 2015 4 Pages
When thinking of sonnets,the main themes that are considered are expressing love and unrequited love. Most sonnets compare the person of affection with nature, specifically flora and the sky. Shakespeare, however, chooses to honor his subjects with more abstract comparisons and goes as far as to mock the typical sonnet. Sonnets 18 and 130 are prime examples of Shakespeare’s perception of sonnets commonly written in his time. The mockery is expressed through the form of these sonnets using common images from the overall theme.
“Sonnet 18” is a one-sided argument on why the speaker, it is assumed to be Shakespeare, should not compare the subject, assumed to be the patron, with a summer’s day. My paraphrase for “Sonnet 18” is as follows: Shall I compare you to a summer’s day? You are more lovely and bettered mannered. Summer ends too quickly, is sometimes too hot, and the sun can be hidden by the clouds. He goes on to say that summer’s beauty will waste away though the patron’s beauty will not. Nor will the patron be truly dead because Shakespeare has immortalized him in verse and as long as there are people who read this sonnet, you will live on.
Definitions for unfamiliar words are provided in sidenotes in the text. For example, dun is defined as grayish brown color, damasked means dappled, and belied means misrepresented (ll. 3,5,15). This sonnet is dedicated to the dark lady and is an announcement of her beauty to an audience, i.e. his friends, other poets, and whomever…

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