Pastoral Poetry Represented in The Passionate Shepherd to His Love by Christopher Marlowe and The Nymph to the Shepherd by Sir Walter Ralegh

Pastoral Poetry Represented in The Passionate Shepherd to His Love by Christopher Marlowe and The Nymph to the Shepherd by Sir Walter Ralegh

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The poems “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” and “The Nymph to the Shepherd” are both poems that can be compared and contrasted in many ways. Both poems greatly represent pastoral poetry and would be considered as pastoral lyrics. Between the two poems, they are connected but also at the same time distant from one another. Readers will notice how they differ in terms of one being a question and the other poem replying to the question given.
"The Passionate Shepherd to His Love" by Christopher Marlowe is an invitation to a happy marriage life, while on the other hand, Sir Walter Ralegh's "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" is answer to the proposal given. Although both poems refer to some of the same settings and beautiful images, both poems have very different tones.
Starting with “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” the audience will notice how giddy the speakers tone is, he comes off as a hopeless romantic. The shepherd is very much in love with the beautiful nymph, which portrays a romantic theme. His theme plays upon a hopeful spring time love with the nymph. He’s promised a life full of happiness, that he promises he can give her. In his poem he goes down a list of all the material things he could give her and how happy all those things would make her. The proposal is an exaggeration of a luxurious life he thinks the nymph will have with him. He relies on pathos too much to persuade the Nymph into marrying him. To persuade the beautiful nymph, the shepherd emphasizes on some of the points in his poem such as these:
“And I will make thee beds of Roses
And a thousand fragrant posies,
A cap of flowers, and a kirtle
Embroidered all with leaves of myrtle;
A gown made of the finest wool
Which from our pretty lambs w...


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...decay and cold winter days and nights.
The diction used in Sir Walter Raleigh’s poem is all originally from “The Passionate Shepherds to His Love”. These two poems are only connected because everything the shepherd states, the nymph replies with the same thing but with a wiser sense of what’s to come after spring. The nymph repeats a couple lines about the material things the shepherd had previously stated he would give her. The Nymph’s Reply to the Shepherd is no doubt a direct response to the proposal given to her by the “The Passionate Shepherd”.
Though both poems do mirror one another, the tone of each poem divides the two poems apart. “The Passionate Shepherd to his Love” represents the wishful and hopeful thinking of love. “The Nymph’s reply to the Shepherd” represents the view of experience and old knowledge of the seasons that will change over time.

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