Essay on Critical Analysis of Sonnet 29 by William Shakespeare

Essay on Critical Analysis of Sonnet 29 by William Shakespeare

Length: 2546 words (7.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Term Papers

Open Document

Essay Preview


Critical Analysis of Sonnet 29 by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare (1564-1616) lived in a time of religious turbulence. During the Renaissance people began to move away from the Church. Authors began to focus on the morals of the individual and on less lofty ideals than those of the Middle Ages. Shakespeare wrote one-hundred fifty-four sonnets during his lifetime. Within these sonnets he largely explored romantic love, not the love of God. In Sonnet 29 Shakespeare uses specific word choice and rhyme to show the reader that it is easy to be hopeful when life is going well, but love is always there, for rich and poor alike, even when religion fails.
The first line is “When, in disgrace with Fortune and men’s eyes.” The very first word shows that the condition which will be explored in the sonnet is a temporary thing. It comes and goes like a beggar or like an outcast. Shakespeare used the word “when” to put the reader into the time that will be referred to. It automatically calls to mind an occurrence, and it makes the reader continue into the piece, trying to find out what Shakespeare will make occur. The next words are “in disgrace with Fortune and men’s eyes.” It seems that Shakespeare’s persona is down on his luck. Fortune, noticeably, is capitalized. This makes it a proper noun, a name perhaps. Shakespeare, on the other hand, could be trying to show the reader that fortune is something important, something that has power and meaning. Continuing into the line, “men’s eyes” appears. Notice that it is men’s eyes, not women’s eyes or man’s eyes. The latter, man’s eyes, would make it seem as if the persona was in disgrace with all of mankind, yet Shakespeare specifically chose to have disgrace in “men’s eyes.” This sh...


... middle of paper ...


...with the Fortune to become kings.
William Shakespeare shows the reader that religious hope is easy to come by when life is going well, but in the case of the persona it is even easier to fall away from religion. All that anyone truly has to fall back on is love. Love exists for both the rich and the poor, the powerful and the powerless. It costs nothing, and it breeds hope as well as happiness. To Shakespeare and his persona hope and happiness are worth more than all the jewels and gold a king could have. Gold and jewels are just items, and while they may glitter and shine, they cannot bring a man to Heaven. Whether it is physical, emotional, or religious, only love has the power to bring a man to the gates of Heaven.

Bibliography
Shakespeare, William. “Sonnet 29”. English and Western Literature. Ed George Kearns. New
York: Macmillan Publishing Co., 1984.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

William Shakespeare 's Sonnet 130 Essays

- Although many people find flaws in others, there always comes a time where one seems to let go of these imperfections and replace the defects with love Sonnet 130 is a unique love poem in which William Shakespeare describes the women he claims to love, in many critical ways. Although the first twelve lines describe the women to be distasteful and vile, the last two lines create a shift in which Shakespeare explains that despite her unsavory ways, he still loves her. Shakespeare illustrates that there is not a perfect person in the world, but that one day everyone will be able to find someone who will look past their faults and love them the way they are....   [tags: Poetry, Sonnet, Iambic pentameter, Poetic form]

Term Papers
1050 words (3 pages)

Essay on Critical Appreciation of Shakespeare's To His Love Sonnet 106

- Critical Appreciation of Shakespeare's To His Love Sonnet 106 Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616, English dramatist and poet, b. Stratford-on-Avon. He is considered the greatest playwright who ever lived. He is also a sonneteer. His father was John Shakespeare. In 1582 Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway, eight years his senior and pregnant at the time of the marriage. They had three children: Susanna, born in 1583, and twins, Hamnet and Judith, born in 1585. In 1594 Shakespeare became an actor and playwright for the Lord Chamberlain's Men, the company that later became the King's Men under James I....   [tags: Papers]

Term Papers
1931 words (5.5 pages)

Elizabeth Barrett Browning And William Shakespeare Essay

- For centuries, individuals have had the urge to communicate their feelings, thoughts, and passions, whether it be in the form of speech, writing, or drawing. These are only a few of many types of manners that the human kind have appropriated to represent secretive passions for something. Although their forms of expression are countless, writing is one of them in which individuals encounter tend to find comfort to communicate profound words. Poetry is a writing device that helps the person to share a clarification of a feeling by using complexity in its words based on the individual 's views....   [tags: Poetry, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Sonnet]

Term Papers
782 words (2.2 pages)

Justifying Mutual Deceit in William Shakespeare's Sonnet 138 Essay examples

- Justifying Mutual Deceit in William Shakespeare's Sonnet 138 A common conception of William Shakespeare’s poetry entails complex language and hidden meanings. Shakespeare is famous for his ability to author a web of images that creates layers of interpretations and understandings. In Sonnet 138 however, Shakespeare is more direct in describing his relationship with his lover by avoiding imagery and metaphors, explaining to the reader that this seemingly unconventional relationship is indeed justified....   [tags: William Shakespeare Sonnet]

Term Papers
1862 words (5.3 pages)

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare Essay

- Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare Four hundred years ago, William Shakespeare wrote The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, a popular play that continues to capture the imagination and emotions of people around the world. The drama portrays the passionate, violent and often desperate lives of the youth of Verona. Even today, the tragedy resembles a blueprint of the problems that the adolescents of the twentieth century must face each day. In this play, Shakespeare explores the pitfalls of young love and the consequences they receive from their actions....   [tags: Papers]

Term Papers
1704 words (4.9 pages)

William Shakespeare 's Sonnet 2 Essay

- William Shakespeare just couldn 't leave the man alone. "Sonnet 2" is part of a 17-sonnet collection written to a young friend encouraging him to produce progeny. Also known as "the procreation sonnets" (Shmoop Editorial Team), the poet urges him to "marry and eternize his beauty through the engendering of children, [...] to conquer devouring Time" (Bevington 883). To attain immortality, to beat time, he needed to wed and pass his name on to an heir. This collection of sonnets appears to be written by an overzealous parent....   [tags: Shakespeare's sonnets, Sonnet, Poetry]

Term Papers
1550 words (4.4 pages)

Essay on A Critical Analysis Of William

- In order for a poem to be classified as a sonnet, it must meet certain structural requirements, and Sonnet 138, “When my love swears that she is made of truth,'; is a perfect example. Shakespeare employs the traditional rhyme scheme of the English sonnet, the poem is made up of three quatrains and a rhyming couplet, and iambic pentameter is the predominant meter. However, it would be an error to approach this poem as a traditional Shakespearean love sonnet. It is a ‘love’ poem in the sense that a relationship between two lovers is the central theme, but the reader is offered a somewhat unexpected viewpoint....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
1468 words (4.2 pages)

William Shakespeare's Sonnet 18 Essay examples

- Keeping love alive is not easy. One knows that life eventually comes to an end, but does love. Time passes and days must end. It is in "Sonnet 18", by Shakespeare, that we see a challenge to the idea that love is finite. Shakespeare shows us how some love is eternal and will live on forever in comparison to a beautiful summer's day. Shakespeare has a way of keeping love alive in "Sonnet 18", and he uses a variety of techniques to demonstrate how love is more brilliant and everlasting than a summer's day....   [tags: Shakespeare Sonnet]

Term Papers
935 words (2.7 pages)

Midlife Crisis in William Shakespeare's Sonnet 138 Essay

- Midlife Crisis in William Shakespeare's Sonnet 138 William Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 138” presents an aging man’s rationalization for deceit in an affair with a younger woman. The speaker of the sonnet realizes his mistress lies to him about being faithful. He in turn, portrays himself as younger than he actually is: “When my love swears that she is made of truth / I do believe her though I know she lies, / That she might think me some untutored youth…” (1-3). “Sonnet 138” allows the reader a glimpse into the speaker’s mind, and what one finds is a man suffering from what is commonly known as a midlife crisis....   [tags: William shakespeare Sonnet 138 Essays]

Term Papers
1962 words (5.6 pages)

Essay on The Theme of Unconditional Love in William Shakespeare's Sonnet 130

- The Theme of Unconditional Love in William Shakespeare's Sonnet 130 'Sonnet 130' sounds as if it is mocking all of the other poems of Shakespeare's era. Love poems of this time period made women out to be superficial goddesses. 'Sonnet 130' takes the love poem to a deeper, more intimate level where looks are no longer important and it is inner beauty that matters. Shakespeare paints this picture using a wonderful combination of metaphors and a simile. He starts the poem out with a simile comparing his mistress' eyes to the sun....   [tags: Papers William Shakespeare Sonnet 130 Essays]

Term Papers
588 words (1.7 pages)