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I Renaissance Poetry. Petrarch and Beyond Love It!. Poetry Analysis. T= title [if applicable, what does it indicate?] P= paraphrase [put the piece into your own words—what do you know? What is missing?] C= connotation [all literary elements and their impact upon the piece—analysis]

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i renaissance poetry

I Renaissance Poetry

Petrarch and Beyond

Love It!

poetry analysis
Poetry Analysis
  • T= title [if applicable, what does it indicate?]
  • P= paraphrase [put the piece into your own words—what do you know? What is missing?]
  • C= connotation [all literary elements and their impact upon the piece—analysis]
  • A= attitude [tone—speaker’s / writer’s feelings about a particular subject]
  • S= shift [“turn” in a sonnet; where a change in tone, subject, speaker, etc. takes place]
  • T= title [again: is there a change? Does it matter?]
  • T= theme [what does the speaker / author want to convey to the reader about the human condition in a given situation? Remember, this is not a cliché]
  • 14 line lyric
  • Single stanza
  • Iambic pentameter line
  • Intricate rhyme scheme
  • Often written in narrative sequences—sonnet sequence
  • Often concerned with love and desire
  • Diversity of sonnet models
italian petrarchan sonnet
Italian/Petrarchan Sonnet
  • Named for Petrarch
  • 2 main units
    • Octave—eight line section—rhyming abbaabba
    • Sestet—six line section—rhyming cdecde or variation (e.g. cdccdc)
  • Octave presents problem or poses scenario that is answered or resolved in sestet
  • Imitated in English by Milton, Wordsworth, and Rossetti
english sonnet
English Sonnet
  • Also known as Shakespearean sonnet
  • Three quatrains (4 line poetic section) with a final couplet
    • ababcdcdefefgg
  • Presents three views of perspectives on a problem or scenario with epigrammatic conclusion in final couplet
  • Flourishes in Renaissance—time of cultural renewal and revival in which classical texts are rediscovered and re-valued
poetic features of sonnet
Poetic features of sonnet
  • Conceits—yoking together of disparate concepts or images
  • Metaphor—expression in which one kind of concept or activity is compared or applied to notably distinct kind of concept or activity (e.g. he’s a fox)
  • Metonymy—literal term for one concept or action is used to denote closely related concept or action (e.g. crown)
poetic features of sonnet1
Poetic features of sonnet
  • Synecdoche—apart of concept or thing is used to denote the whole of concept or thing (40 head [of cattle])
  • Petrarchan conceit—conceits (usually about women, love, and beauty) used in love poems that were original when Petrarch used them but became hackneyed and parodied by later English writers
things we see in the sonnet
Things we see in the sonnet
  • Antitype—New Testament correlatives to Old Testament Types
  • Blazon—Poetic technique in which individual (often woman) is imagined or portrayed by partitioning the body into specified metaphors; mock-heraldic description
  • Bombast—pretentious, verbose, and inflated diction that is notably inappropriate to the matter it signifies
petrarch soleasi nel mio cor
Petrarch— “SoleasiNel Mio Cor”

She ruled in beauty o'er this heart of mine,

A noble lady in a humble home,

And now her time for heavenly bliss has come,

'Tis I am mortal proved, and she divine.

The soul that all its blessings must resign,

And love whose light no more on earth finds room,

Might rend the rocks with pity for their doom,

Yet none their sorrows can in words enshrine;

They weep within my heart; and ears are deaf

Save mine alone, and I am crushed with care,

And naught remains to me save mournful breath.

Assuredly but dust and shade we are,

Assuredly desire is blind and brief,

Assuredly its hope but ends in death

wyatt pg 649 whoso list to hunt
Wyatt pg. 649— “Whoso List to Hunt”

Whoso list to hunt, I know where is an hind,

But as for me, alas, I may no more.

The vain travail hath wearied me so sore,

I am of them that farthest cometh behind.

Yet may I by no means my wearied mind

Draw from the deer, but as she fleeth afore

Fainting I follow. I leave off therefore,

Since in a net I seek to hold the wind.

Who list her hunt, I put him out of doubt,

As well as I may spend his time in vain.

And graven with diamonds in letters plain

There is written, her fair neck round about:

Noli me tangere, for Caesar's I am,

And wild for to hold, though I seem tame.

spenser from amoretti 985 6 sonnet 1
Spenser from Amoretti 985-6 ; “Sonnet 1”

Happy ye leaves when as those lily hands,

Which hold my life in their dead doing might,

Shall handle you and hold in love's soft bands,

Like captives trembling at the victor's sight.

And happy lines on which, with starry light,

Those lamping eyes will deign sometimes to look,

And read the sorrows of my dying sprite,

Written with tears in heart's close bleeding book.

And happy rhymes bathed in the sacred brook

Of Helicon whence she derived is,

When ye behold that angel's blessed look,

My soul's long lacked food, my heaven's bliss.

Leaves, lines, and rhymes seek her to please alone,

Whom if ye please, I care for other none.

sonnet 35 outside text
“Sonnet 35” [outside text]

My hungry eyes through greedy covetize,Still to behold the object of their pain,With no contentment can themselves suffice;But having pine and having not, complain.For lacking it, they cannot life sustain;And having it they gaze on it the more,In their amazement like Narcissus vainWhose eyes him starved: so plenty makes me poor.Yet are mine eyes so filled with the storeOf that fair sight, that nothing else they brook,But loathe the things which they did like before,And can no more endure on them to look.All this world’s glory seemeth vain to me,And all their shows but shadows, saving she.

page 989 sonnet 75
page 989 “Sonnet 75”

One day I wrote her name upon the strand,

But came the waves and washed it away:

Again I wrote it with a second hand,

But came the tide, and made my pains his prey.

“Vain man,” said she, “that dost in vain assay

A mortal thing so to immortalize!

For I myself shall like to this decay,

And eek my name be wiped out likewise.”

“Not so,”quod I, “let baser things devise

To die in dust, but you shall live by fame:

My verse your virtues rare shall eternize,

And in the heavens write your glorious name;

Where, whenas death shall all the world subdue,

Our love shall live, and later life renew.”

sidney page 1096 astrophil and stella 72
Sidney page 1096– Astrophil and Stella 72

Desire, though thou my old companion art,

And oft so clings to my pure Love that I

One from the other scarcely can descry,

While each doth blow the fire of my heart,

Now from thy fellowship I needs must part;

Venus is taught with Dian’s wings to fly;

I must no more in thy sweet passions lie;

Virtue’s gold now must head my Cupid’s dart.

Service and honor, wonder with delight,

Fear to offend, will worthy to appear,

Care shining in mine eyes, faith in my sprite:

These things are let me by my only dear;

But thou, Desire, because thou wouldst have all,

Now banished art. But yet alas how shall?

shakespeare page 1172 sonnet 18
Shakespeare page 1172— “Sonnet 18”

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate:Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,And summer's lease hath all too short a date: Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,And often is his gold complexion dimm'd; And every fair from fair sometime declines,By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd;But thy eternal summer shall not fadeNor lose possession of that fair thou owest;Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade,When in eternal lines to time thou growest: So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,So long lives this and this gives life to thee.

shakespeare take 2 page 1184 sonnet 130
Shakespeare [Take 2] page 1184 “Sonnet 130”

My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;Coral is far more red than her lips' red;If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.I have seen roses damask'd, red and white,But no such roses see I in her cheeks; And in some perfumes is there more delightThan in the breath that from my mistress reeks.I love to hear her speak, yet well I knowThat music hath a far more pleasing sound;I grant I never saw a goddess go;My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground:   And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare   As any she belied with false compare.


Do not think that sonnets have a lock on the objectification of women. . . .Many carpe diem pieces function specifically to “woo” and label members of the opposite sex. Sometimes, the encouragement is made directly to the women, themselves.

carpe diem
Carpe Diem
  • “Seize the Day!”
  • A sentiment that is often used to indicate the fleeting nature of our existence. This can be used in a positive or a negative light—as this indicates hope for something immediate and gratifying, but it also indicates that it does not matter what we do, because it is all transitory—yippee!

And then there is the text material on

Renaissance Love & Desire pgs. 1000+


thomas lodge pluck the fruit and taste the pleasure pg 1012
Thomas Lodge “Pluck the fruit and taste the pleasure” pg. 1012

Pluck the fruit and taste the pleasure,  

Youthful lordings, of delight;

Whilst occasion gives you seizure,   

Feed your fancies and your sight:     

After death, when you are gone,        5

Joy and pleasure is there none.  

Here on earth nothing is stable,   

Fortune’s changes well are known;

Whilst as youth doth then enable,   

Let your seeds of joy be sown:        10

After death, when you are gone,     

Joy and pleasure is there none.  

Feast it freely with your lovers,   

Blithe and wanton sports do fade,

Whilst that lovely Cupid hovers        15

Round about this lovely shade:     

Sport it freely one to one,     

After death is pleasure none.  

Now the pleasant spring allureth,   

And both place and time invites:        20 But, alas, what heart endureth

To disclaim his sweet delights?     

After death, when we are gone,     

Joy and pleasure is there none.

thomas campion i care not for these ladies pg 1018
Thomas Campion “I Care Not for These Ladies” pg. 1018

I care not for these ladies

That must be wooed and prayed:

Give me kind Amaryllis,

The wanton country maid.

Nature art disdaineth, 5

Her beauty is her own.

    Her when we court and kiss,      

    She cries, “Forsooth, let go!”

    But when we come where comfort is,

    She never will say no. 10

If I love Amaryllis,

She gives me fruit and flowers:

But if we love these ladies,

We must give golden showers.

Give them gold, that sell love, 15

Give me the nut-brown lass,

    Who, when we court and kiss,

    She cries, “Forsooth, let go!”

    But when we come where comfort is,

    She never will say no. 20

These ladies must have pillows,

And beds by strangers wrought;

Give me a bower of willows,

Of moss and leaves unbought,

And fresh Amaryllis, 25

With milk and honey fed;

    Who, when we court and kiss,

    She cries, “Forsooth, let go!”

    But when we come where comfort is,

    She never will say no. 30

thomas campion there is a garden in her face pg 1020
Thomas Campion “There is a Garden in Her Face” pg. 1020

There is a garden in her face

Where roses and white lilies grow;

A heav'nly paradise is that place

Wherein all pleasant fruits do flow.

      There cherries grow which none may buy, 5

      Till "Cherry ripe" themselves do cry.

Those cherries fairly do enclose

Of orient pearl a double row,

Which when her lovely laughter shows,

They look like rose-buds fill'd with snow; 10

      Yet them nor peer nor prince can buy,

      Till "Cherry ripe" themselves do cry.

Her eyes like angels watch them still,

Her brows like bended bows do stand,

Threat'ning with piercing frowns to kill 15

All that attempt with eye or hand

      Those sacred cherries to come nigh,

      Till "Cherry ripe" themselves do cry.

marlowe the passionate shepherd to his love page 1126
Marlowe– “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” page 1126

Come live with me and be my love,And we will all the pleasures proveThat valleys, groves, hills, and fields,Woods, or steepy mountain yields.

And we will sit upon the rocks,Seeing the shepherds feed their flocks,By shallow rivers to whose fallsMelodious birds sing madrigals.

And I will make thee beds of rosesAnd a thousand fragrant posies,A cap of flowers, and a kirtle,Embroidered all with leaves of myrtle;

A gown made of the finest woolWhich from our pretty lambs we pull;Fair linèd slippers for the cold,With buckles of the purest gold;

A belt of straw, and ivy buds,With coral clasps and amber studs:And if these pleasures may thee move,Come live with me, and be my love.

The shepherds's swains shall dance and singFor thy delight each May morning:If these delights thy mind may move,Then live with me and be my love.

raleigh the nymph s reply to the shepherd 1024
Raleigh– “The Nymph’s Reply To The Shepherd” 1024

If all the world and love were young, And truth in every Shepherd’s tongue, These pretty pleasures might me move, To live with thee, and be thy love. Time drives the flocks from field to fold, When Rivers rage and Rocks grow cold, And Philomel becometh dumb, The rest complains of cares to come. The flowers do fade, and wanton fields, To wayward winter reckoning yields, A honey tongue, a heart of gall, Is fancy’s spring, but sorrow’s fall. Thy gowns, thy shoes, thy beds of Roses, Thy cap, thy kirtle, and thy posies Soon break, soon wither, soon forgotten: In folly ripe, in reason rotten. Thy belt of straw and Ivy buds, The Coral clasps and amber studs, All these in me no means can move To come to thee and be thy love. But could youth last, and love still breed, Had joys no date, nor age no need, Then these delights my mind might move To live with thee, and be thy love.

robert herrick to the virgins to make much of time pg 1762
Robert Herrick “To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time” pg. 1762

Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,

Old Time is still a-flying;

And this same flower that smiles today,

Tomorrow will be dying.

The glorious lamp of heaven, the sun, 5

The higher he’s a-getting,

The sooner will his race be run,

And nearer he’s to setting.

That age is best which is the first,

When youth and blood are warmer; 10

0 But being spent, the worse, and worst

Times still succeed the former.

Then be not coy, but use your time,

And while ye may, go marry;

For having lost but once your prime, 15

You may forever tarry.

andrew marvell to his coy mistress pg 1796
Andrew Marvell “To His Coy Mistress” pg. 1796

Had we but world enough and time,

This coyness, lady, were no crime.

We would sit down, and think which way

To walk, and pass our long love’s day.

Thou by the Indian Ganges’ side 5

Shouldst rubies find; I by the tide

Of Humber would complain. I would

Love you ten years before the flood,

And you should, if you please, refuse

Till the conversion of the Jews. 10

My vegetable love should grow

Vaster than empires and more slow;

An hundred years should go to praise

Thine eyes, and on thy forehead gaze;

Two hundred to adore each breast, 15

But thirty thousand to the rest;

An age at least to every part,

And the last age should show your heart.

For, lady, you deserve this state,

Nor would I love at lower rate.       20

But at my back I always hear

Time’s wingèd chariot hurrying near;

And yonder all before us lie

Deserts of vast eternity.

Thy beauty shall no more be found; 25

Nor, in thy marble vault, shall sound

My echoing song; then worms shall try

That long-preserved virginity,

And your quaint honour turn to dust,

And into ashes all my lust; 30

The grave’s a fine and private place,

But none, I think, do there embrace.

       Now therefore, while the youthful hue

Sits on thy skin like morning dew,

And while thy willing soul transpires 35

At every pore with instant fires,

Now let us sport us while we may,

And now, like amorous birds of prey,

Rather at once our time devour

Than languish in his slow-chapped power. 40

Let us roll all our strength and all

Our sweetness up into one ball,

And tear our pleasures with rough strife

Thorough the iron gates of life:

Thus, though we cannot make our sun 45

Stand still, yet we will make him run.