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Discussion Of Common Themes In Sonnets 65, 104 And 116.

1047 words - 4 pages

Shakespeare is generally regarded as one of the greatest playwrights who ever lived who also had great skill in creating beautifully poignant poetry. His great masterpieces include the 154 sonnets written in 16th century England. Although it is unknown if he wrote these sonnets in the order that they are numbered, it is recognised that the majority of the first 126 sonnets were addressed to the Earl of Southampton, his patron and social superior. These sonnets delve into Shakespeare's thoughts and emotions during the time he was having a relationship with the young man. Through his sonnets he is able to communicate to the audience of today, the notion that love is a constant emotion which has the ability to transcend the inconsistencies of physical beauty and time.Sonnet 104's focus is on how the beauty of Shakespeare's "fair friend" remains to be untouched despite the transience of time. The "Three beauteous springs to yellow autumn turned" indicates that he has known the person whom he is writing about for approximately three years. In this time he has not observed any physical change, in fact, he states that to him, his beloved "can never be old". It would be fair to say that Shakespeare is totally aware of the passing of time because he has "seen, three April perfumes in three hot Junes burned" thus he must also be aware that loss of beauty is unavoidable. Despite this, Shakespeare says to his friend "such seems your beauty still". It can be inferred that when he first "eyed" the eye of the beloved what he saw was a beautiful soul in a beautiful body; after all it was a common concept that the eyes are a window to the soul. While extrinsic beauty eventually and unerringly fades, the intrinsic beauty and love one has for a person often proves to be another matter. Shakespeare may have initially greatly admired the physical charm of his friend but he may have also fallen deeply in love with his/her personality. Hence it makes sense that the beloved still appeared to retain their "sweet hue" because their inner beauty "still doth stand" and he still felt the same way about them. Perhaps aware that he was deeply infatuated, Shakespeare also seemed to be concerned that his eyes "may be deceived". They are unable to penetrate the reality of time's passing and beauty fading. Thus in the last rhyming couplet he warns those that are yet to be born, "Ere were you born was summer's beauty dead" - beauty just like the summer, is destined to fade.The idea of love resisting the passing of time is carried on in sonnet 116, where Shakespeare explores that ideality and consistency of human love. He pronounces at the very opening of the poem "Let me not to the marriage of true minds, Admit impediments". This basically means that does not acknowledge that any type of obstacle is able to alter the spiritual union ("marriage") of constant and faithful ("true") minds, therefore introducing the idealistic view of love being untouchable to any sort of pressure. Of...

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