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Sonnet 30: When to the sessions of sweet silent thought Analysis



Author: poem of William Shakespeare Type: poem Views: 37

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When to the sessions of sweet silent thought
I summon up remembrance of things past,
I sigh the lack of many a thing I sought,
And with old woes new wail my dear time's waste.
Then can I drown an eye, unused to flow,
For precious friends hid in death's dateless night,
And weep afresh love's long since cancelled woe,
And moan th' expense of many a vanished sight.
Then can I grieve at grievances foregone,
And heavily from woe to woe tell o'er
The sad account of fore-bemoanèd moan,
Which I new pay as if not paid before.
    But if the while I think on thee, dear friend,
    All losses are restored and sorrows end.

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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||




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Nice copy of Cliff\'s notes. Think for yourself.

| Posted on 2011-01-22 | by a guest


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The poet repeats Sonnet 29’s theme, that memories of the youth are priceless compensations—not only for many disappointments and unrealized hopes but for the loss of earlier friends: “But if the while I think on thee, dear friend, / All losses are restored and sorrows end.” Stylistically, Sonnet 30 identically mirrors the preceding sonnet’s poetic form.
This sonnet is one of the most exquisitely crafted in the entire sequence dealing with the poet’s depression over the youth’s separation (Sonnets 26–32). It includes an extraordinary complexity of sound patterns, including the effective use of alliteration—repetitive consonant sounds in a series of words—for example, both the “s” and “t” sounds in “sessions of sweet silent thought.”
But alliteration is only one method poets use to enhance the melody of their work. Rhyme, of course, is another device for doing this. A third is assonance—similar vowel sounds in accented syllables—for example, the short “e” sound in the phrases “When sessions” and “remembrance”. In this case, the short “e” sound helps unify the sonnet, for the assonant sound both begins—”When”—and concludes—”end”—the sonnet.
Contributing to the distinctive rhythm of Sonnet 30’s lines is the variation of accents in the normally iambic pentameter lines. For example, line 7 has no obvious alternation of short and long syllables. Equal stress is placed on “weep afresh love’s long,” with only slightly less stress on “since,” which follows this phrase. Likewise, in line 6, “friends hid” and “death’s dateless night” are equally stressed. This sonnet typifies why the Shakespeare of the sonnets is held to be without rival in achieving rhythm, melody, and sound within the limited sonnet structure.

| Posted on 2009-01-28 | by a guest




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