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The Theme In Edmund Spenser’s “Sonnet 26”

416 words - 2 pages

Ashley-Anna AboredenAP English Language and CompositionTeacher: Dr. StobaughSeptember 23, 2014The Theme in Edmund Spenser's "Sonnet 26""So every sweet with sour is tempered still, / That maketh it be coveted the more." (Spenser, "Sonnet 26", lines 11-12). In Edmund Spenser's "Sonnet 26", Spenser emphasized the notion that life is made sweeter by some kind of pain or obstacle. He recorded several beautiful flowers to evidence this notion. He then used this list of flowers to express that he may endure "little paine" to experience ...view middle of the document...

Regardless, Spenser expressed his idea using flowers, such as the rose, to demonstrate that there cannot be pleasure without pain. Spenser continued his categorization through line 8, ending with "and sweet is Moly, but his root is ill." (line 8). In line 9, Spenser conjectured from nature "euery sweet with soure is tempered still," (line 9). However, Spenser deemed that this sourness made the object all the more pleasing: "that maketh it be coueted more:" (line 10). He goes on to say that objects that are gained effortlessly, are not as desirable as those that bring pain (lines11-12). Spenser ended this "amoretto" (little Cupid) expressing that the gain of endless pleasure is worth the little pain it brings (lines 13-14).Although Spenser's "Sonnet 26" is but few lines, it is rich in meaning. Spenser reflected on the idea that everything, including life, was made sweeter by an obstacle or conflict. He used beautiful flowers to demonstrate this notion. Therefore, the motif in Edmund Spenser's "Sonnet 26" is that there is no true pleasure without some pain. "Why then should I accoumpt of little paine, / that endless pleasure shall unto me gaine." (Spenser, "Sonnet 26", lines 13-14).

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