A Comparison of Andrew Marvell's To His Coy Mistress and Thomas Hardy's The Ruined Maid

A Comparison of Andrew Marvell's To His Coy Mistress and Thomas Hardy's The Ruined Maid

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A Comparison of Andrew Marvell's To His Coy Mistress and Thomas Hardy's The Ruined Maid


In this essay I will look at the two poems, explore what the poems are
about, look at the language and images used in them by the writers and
then compare the two.

"The ruined maid" by Thomas Hardy is a conversation between two women;
"Melia", the ruined maid herself and another lady, her friend of whom
she used to know when she lived in need. Melia's friend brings up all
different points about Melia that have changed, for example the way
she looks, 'now you've gay bracelets' and acts, 'you'd sigh and you'd
sock' but Melia just says a few simple words in reply.

'To his coy mistress' by Andrew Marvell is a one sided argument and is
about a man trying to persuade his mistress to lose her virginity with
him before her looks and beauty start to go, as she gets older. He
tries to persuade her to have sex with him by using flattery, humour
and frightening, almost blackmailing her by describing different
shocking images.

Hardy writes 'The ruined maid' in an unusual way, one of which is not
usually heard of, he writes it as if it was an actual informal
conversation between two women. He creates this by using various
amounts of punctuation; he uses speech marks throughout the poem, uses
dashes to separate the two different people?s speech, and uses
question marks, explanation marks and further speech marks in all the
appropriate places, which all help to give the effect of the
conversation happening, from the first line to the last and encourages
the reader to think of it more as a dialogue when reading it.

'Your talking quite fits 'ee for high compa-ny!'-

?Some polish is gained with one?s ruin,? said she? is an e...


... middle of paper ...


...gh it is obvious that she does not want to, as she
would have known that it wasn?t the best thing to do, that her marital
status would have been in ruins, her reputation in tatters. However in
?The ruined maid? Melia had already have had sex and although her old
life and the only way she knew was gone, she had gained a much better
one, where although she is no longer of any marital value, she appears
(unless it is just a cover) to be more polished and seems happier in
general life.

If you look at it in one way, ?The ruined maid? could be what could
happen to the mistress in ?To his coy mistress?. It could be what
happens to her if she goes through with the man?s proposal so in
conclusion, although the poems tell the tales of two different
stories, they could easily be part of the same one, where ?The ruined
maid? follows on from ?To his coy mistress?.

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