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William Shakespeare's sonnets

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1 William Shakespeare's sonnets
1 12 18 23

2 Introduction selected From Wikipedia
SHAKE-SPEARES SONNETS, or simply The Sonnets, is a collection of poems in sonnet form written by William Shakespeare that deal with such themes as love, beauty, politics, and mortality. They were probably written over a period of several years. All 154 poems appeared in a 1609 collection, comprising 152 previously unpublished sonnets and two poems, numbers 138 ("When my love swears that she is made of truth") and 144 ("Two loves have I, of comfort and despair"), that had previously been published in a 1599 miscellany entitled The Passionate Pilgrim.

3 structure The sonnets are each constructed from three four-line stanzas (called quatrains) and a final couplet composed in iambic pentameter ( a meter used extensively in Shakespeare's plays) with the rhyme scheme abab cdcd efef gg (this form is now known as the Shakespearean sonnet). The only exceptions are Sonnets 99, 126, and 145. Number 99 has fifteen lines. Number 126 consists of six couplets, and two blank lines marked with italic brackets; 145 is in iambic tetrameters, not pentameters. Often, the beginning of the third quatrain marks the "turn", or the line in which the mood of the poem shifts, and the poet expresses a revelation or epiphany. This is sometimes known as the volta.

4 3 quatrains and 1 couplet 1234 12

5 iambic pentameter We can notate this with a 'x' mark representing an unstressed syllable and a '/' mark representing a stressed syllable. In this notation a line of iambic pentameter would look like this: x/x/x/x/x/ Pentameter: penta- =five, meter=a part

6 Epiphany a. A Christian feast celebrating the manifestation of the divine nature of Jesus to the Gentiles as represented by the Magi. b. January 6, on which this feast is traditionally observed. 2. A revelatory manifestation of a divine being. 3. a. A sudden manifestation of the essence or meaning of something. b. A comprehension or perception of reality by means of a sudden intuitive realization

7 From fairest creatures we desire increase, That thereby beauty's rose might never die, But as the riper should by time decease, His tender heir might bear his memory: But thou contracted to thine own bright eyes, Feed'st thy light's flame with self-substantial fuel, Making a famine where abundance lies, Thy self thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel: Thou that art now the world's fresh ornament, And only herald to the gaudy spring, Within thine own bud buriest thy content, And, tender churl, mak'st waste in niggarding: Pity the world, or else this glutton be, To eat the world's due, by the grave and thee. 1

8 I-You-He Thou-Thy-Thee = You-Your-You I=the speaker, the poet

9 contrast Increase ↔ _____________ Beauty ↔ _____________
Riper ↔ _____________ Abundance ↔ _____________

10 Imagery Life, creatures, ______________, grave
Bright, light ______________ Famine, eat, __________ Ornament, _____________

11 Thy self thy foe? Underling all words related to “thou.”
Why self-substantial? Thy sweet self?

12 The appellation: tender churl
A rude, boorish person. A miserly person. About the word history: Why does the poet (the addresser) call the addressee “tender churl?” Word History: The word churl comes almost unchanged in meaning and pronunciation, though not in spelling, from Old English ceorl, "freeman of the lowest class." An Anglo-Saxon ceorl had a social position above a slave but below a thegn, "thane." Ceorl comes from Germanic *karilaz, whose basic meaning is "old man." In Finnish, which is not a Germanic language, the Germanic word was borrowed and survives almost unchanged as karilas, "old man." The Old Norse descendant of the Germanic word, karl, means "old man, servant," and the Old High German equivalent, karal, meaning "man, lover, husband," has become the name Karl. Middle High German karl, "freeman," was adopted into northern French as Charles, from which we have the name Charles. The Medieval Latin form Carolus is based on the Old High German karal. The fame of Carolus Magnus, "Charles the Great," or Charlemagne, added luster to the name Carolus and explains why the Slavic languages borrowed the name as their general word for "king," korol' in Russian.

13 The conclusive couplet
What is the message from the conclusive couplet?

14 12 When I do count the clock that tells the time, And see the brave day sunk in hideous night; When I behold the violet past prime, And sable curls, all silvered o'er with white; When lofty trees I see barren of leaves, Which erst from heat did canopy the herd, And summer's green all girded up in sheaves, Borne on the bier with white and bristly beard, Then of thy beauty do I question make, That thou among the wastes of time must go, Since sweets and beauties do themselves forsake And die as fast as they see others grow; And nothing 'gainst Time's scythe can make defence Save breed, to brave him when he takes thee hence.

15 18 Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate. Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer's lease hath all too short a date. Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, And often is his gold complexion dimm’d; And every fair from fair some time declines, By chance, or nature’s changing course, untrimm’d; But thy eternal summer shall not fade Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st; Nor shall Death brag thou wand'rest in his shade, When in eternal lines to time thou grow’st: So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.

16 23 As an unperfect actor on the stage, Who with his fear is put beside his part, Or some fierce thing replete with too much rage, Whose strength's abundance weakens his own heart; So I, for fear of trust, forget to say The perfect ceremony of love's rite, And in mine own love's strength seem to decay, O'ercharg'd with burthen of mine own love's might. O! let my looks be then the eloquence And dumb presagers of my speaking breast, Who plead for love, and look for recompense, More than that tongue that more hath more express'd. O! learn to read what silent love hath writ: To hear with eyes belongs to love's fine wit.

17 Listening practice Available in the following web pages:

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