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A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning Analysis

Author: Poetry of John Donne Type: Poetry Views: 10331

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As virtuous men pass mildly away,

And whisper to their souls, to go,

Whilst some of their sad friends do say,

"The breath goes now," and some say, "No:"

So let us melt, and make no noise,

No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move;

'Twere profanation of our joys

To tell the laity our love.

Moving of th' earth brings harms and fears;

Men reckon what it did, and meant;

But trepidation of the spheres,

Though greater far, is innocent.

Dull sublunary lovers' love

(Whose soul is sense) cannot admit

Absence, because it doth remove

Those things which elemented it.

But we by a love so much refin'd,

That ourselves know not what it is,

Inter-assured of the mind,

Care less, eyes, lips, and hands to miss.

Our two souls therefore, which are one,

Though I must go, endure not yet

A breach, but an expansion,

Like gold to airy thinness beat.

If they be two, they are two so

As stiff twin compasses are two;

Thy soul, the fix'd foot, makes no show

To move, but doth, if the' other do.

And though it in the centre sit,

Yet when the other far doth roam,

It leans, and hearkens after it,

And grows erect, as that comes home.

Such wilt thou be to me, who must

Like th' other foot, obliquely run;

Thy firmness makes my circle just,

And makes me end, where I begun.


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

.: :.

The poem is a dramatic monologue. The man is trying to convince his beloved to stay faithful to him while he is away, and that is why he uses such clever, elaborate conceits. It's a bit desperate though saying the love should 'melt'. SHE'S LOOKING ELSEWHERE AND HE KNOWS IT.

| Posted on 2013-07-14 | by a guest

.: :.

the title \'valediction forbidding\' mean when we part we must not mourn.the poets ask his wife not to make any sentimental for this temporary seperation.the main theme is that love is not physical they will remain forever even if the body get seperated....

| Posted on 2012-05-08 | by a guest

.: :.

jonh donne wrote this peom for his beloved wife to comfort her while he was gone to france for a goverment business and she remaind at home. The title means \" when we part we must not mourn\" in the poem he describes that him and his wife have spirtual but also physical dimension to their love. they will never be part. there souls will united even though their bodies are seperated...

| Posted on 2012-01-06 | by a guest

.: :.

love is verb,god is love,that love came to the earth and said how to love all real love is realition betwen god and&man.\"for God so loved the world,and he gave his one and only son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life\'

| Posted on 2011-01-03 | by a guest

.: :.

Figurative Language
Stanza 1-2 – the speaker says that their farewell should be as mild as the uncomplaining deaths of virtuous men, for to weep would be “profanation of our joys.”
Stanza 3-5 – the speaker compares harmful “Moving of th’ earth” (an earthquake) to innocent “trepidation of the spheres,” equating the first with “dull sublunary lovers’ love” and the second with their love, “Inter-assured of the mind.” Like the rumbling earth, the dull sublunary (beneath the moon and also subject to the moon) lovers are all physical, unable to experience separation without losing the sensation that comprises and sustains their love. The spiritual lovers “Care less, eyes, lips, and hands to miss,” because, like the trepidation (vibration) of the spheres (the concentric globes that surrounded the earth in ancient astronomy), their love is not wholly physical. Also, like the trepidation of the spheres, their movement will not have the harmful consequences of an earthquake.
Stanza 6-9 – the speaker then declares that, since the lovers’ two souls are one, his departure will simply expand the area of their unified soul, rather than cause a rift between them (line 23). If, however, their souls are “two” instead of “one”, they are as the feet of a drafter’s compass, connected, with the center foot fixing the orbit of the outer foot and helping it to describe a perfect circle. The compass represents spiritual love, which is balanced, symmetrical, intellectual, serious, and beautiful in its polished simplicity.

| Posted on 2010-10-25 | by a guest

.: :.

Donne is talking about his lover and comparing the pair of them to a pair of compasses which is his ingenious conceit. he uses sexual innuendo's such as 'erect', although context does matter when judging true meaning of such a word.

| Posted on 2010-05-10 | by a guest

.: :.

This poem is talking about the guy not wanting his wife to cry or mourn over his death. He is saying that they can still be together. Maybe not physically, but they are emotionally. And someday they will meet again in heaven.

| Posted on 2010-03-04 | by a guest

.: :.

sorry, I meant Ptolemaic cosmology, not Copernican!

| Posted on 2009-11-18 | by a guest

.: :.

There are eight syllables in each line, not ten. This breaks down the Copernican cosmology theory a little, but there are still 36 lines.

| Posted on 2009-11-18 | by a guest

.: :.

1) Subject
a) Conge damour
i) Consolation upon separation of lovers
b) The reasons for not mourning his departure;
i) As with a quiet death, friends dont know if the person has departed, so lovers should depart without fuss so they dont reveal the quality of the love to the ignorant.
ii) Like the planets returning in orbit, lovers who are both spiritually and physically in love are not affected by separation.
iii) As the compass point will return, the lover will return home, therefore mourning is inappropriate.
c) Their love is deeper than sublunary lovers;
i) The mind dictates to the body, a love more refined, inter assured of the mind so they will be able to cope.
ii) There is love higher than what other people think love is.
iii) Their souls will not suffer because they are joint - our souls therefore, which are one, endure not yet a breach, but an expansion.
iv) Assured of the others love they know they will not fall out of x metaphors
i) A Conceit
ii) Compasses; circle
iii) As the compasses guides itself, if she waits for him, she will guide his course so he will create the perfect circle and return to her
iv) Moving of the earth; trepidation of the spheres
v) Earthquakes are seen to be more deadly than the planets moving apart. Like the earthquake, lovers cannot deal with separation because of the physical distance. However, the poets love is like the planets, eventually he will return.
vi) Virtuous men; the breath goes
vii) The separation of body and soul is so gentle that friends surrounding the dying and dead cannot tell if they are alive or dead. Therefore there should be no fuss, if other people know about their love it will demean x gold to airy thinness beat
ii) The souls are like gold stretching, to foil but not breaking.
c) Lexical sets
d) Macrocosm
3) Versification and Rhythm
a) Metaphysical poem
b) Nine quatrains
c) Iambic pentameter
d) As a compass travels 360 degrees, there are 36 lines with 10 syllables. In Ptolemaic cosmology, it was believed that after 36,000 years, the planets would return to their original places of the moment of creation.

| Posted on 2009-10-04 | by a guest

.: :.

I see this poem to have a running theme of cheating. "Thy soul, the fix'd... if the' other do" this could show how if she in the centre was to slip up and become unfaithful in his absence then he will also slip and he will not return and there love will be broken. The theme run throughout. The title suggest power and control, 'forbidden'. The whole poem is almost a threat. Narrator is telling her beautiful things in order to stop her cheating Almost as though its a test and if you cheat that he would not come back to her. He is trying to keep control and have power over her which shows inequalities .

| Posted on 2009-09-10 | by a guest

.: :.

The speaker in this poem is John Donne and he is addressing his wife Anne in an attempt to comfort her while he was on a business trip in France. The title says that'when we are apart we must not mourn'. In the first stanza John uses a metaphysical conceit when comparing their separtion to two men dying. While Donne and his wife are apart, they cannot express physical love; thus, they are like the body of the dead man. However, Donne says, they remain united spiritually and intellectually because their souls are one.
He says that while he must leave and the physical bond that units them 'melts' there is no need to cry 'tear-floods'as this is demeaning to our love. Unlike the many ordinary people (laity) their love extends beyound the physical attraction and it doesn't depend entirely on flesh and sexual attraction.

| Posted on 2009-08-04 | by a guest

.: :.

x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x ▲ █ █ x

| Posted on 2009-06-08 | by a guest

.: :.

WOOOAHHHH all that is soo deep, I officially love this poem, all that analysis really is gonna help with my essay, =D

| Posted on 2009-03-07 | by a guest

.: :.

the spheres aren't referring to Copernicus, they are referring to the Ptolemaic cosmology, in which the movements caused no such disturbance as it does on earth- or an earthquake.

| Posted on 2009-03-02 | by a guest

.: :.

HI everybody.um life's rose.
JOHN DONNE WROTE THIS POEM. I like it so much. it remines me of the moment that my lover trveled and told me that I will be in his heart and that our souls are one soul. he comforts me but I still a fraid that he will forget me? I feel that I love him more than he does. our love is not just physical but also spiritual. So I like this poem especially when the poet used the metaphysical conciet in saying that he and his beloved are like the feet of the compass that his beloverd is the fixed one in the canter (stay at home waiting for him) and he is the feet that make a circle of trips and then end from where he begun.he loves her greatly.oh sorry. i have to go. I have an exam tomorrow in the poems of john donne and jeorge herbert. so, have a nice day.

| Posted on 2009-02-13 | by a guest

.: :.

"But trepidation of the spheres" refers to the idea of Copernicus and his ideas arising at this point in history.

| Posted on 2009-02-03 | by a guest

.: :.

Donne's use of metaphorism to compare love with nature is immaculate.

| Posted on 2009-01-08 | by a guest

.: :.

This is a poem written by John Donne for his lover, telling her not to mourn him. He says there love is above what other people think love is. It is beyond a physical love that, it is spiritual and therefore when he dies, she should not be sad and cry because even though they are not together physically, they are still spiritually connected. The main metaphor for this is when he speaks about a compass, how you can pull the ends away from each other but never will be fully apart. They are connected at one point, creating a perfect circle of love, the circle also suggests it will last forever. The concept of death is turned into a celebration of love through clever metaphors, imagery and conceits by John Donne. This couple is different to most because there relationship is not idealistic. It is real and very deep, the fact that they see death as a beginning rather than an end shows a lot to there feelings. The comparisons made between this relationship and that of other peoples shows it is the souls that are in love, rather than the physical beings.

| Posted on 2008-09-15 | by a guest

.: always together :.

a foot of the compass is always the same distance away from the center, never further. same with the spirits in spiritual love.

| Posted on 2008-02-07 | by a guest

.: my perspective :.

This is a poem about a man leaving his wife for a trip or journey the speaker is telling his lover not to mourn lament cry and be sad because they are apart from each other. Even though they are apart from each other physically they can be connected in spiritual love. At the last stanza of the poem the speaker reassures his lover that no matter what they will be together. John Donne in this poem uses a lot of metaphors conceit. This is a very highly intellectual poem which plays with dictio

| Posted on 2008-01-28 | by a guest

.: Ideas :.

The ideas that John Donne Sas about love:

- physical relationships are boring and easily
torn apart.
- true lovers love between the souls.
- True love is a highly sacred thing.

I have to go and write an essay on this now... oh joy to the world....

| Posted on 2007-06-25 | by a guest

.: thought and feeling :.

the 'arguement' of this poem is skillfully developed, relying on the central idea of the two being united and superior. His use of imagery is, on one hand, cleverly thought out and, on the other, emotionaly satisfying. This poem is a perfect example of what Rupert Brook was on about when he said, 'The whole composition of the man was made up of brain, soul and heart.'

| Posted on 2007-04-17 | by a guest

.: Connection :.

This poem is about the speaker's connection to his significant other. He is departing, but they will always be connected, similarily how you can pull the ends of a compass away from eachother but not fully apart. Rather, they are connected at one point always reminding of each other and creating a perfect circle of love through the trepidation of spheres A sublunary lovers' love is the love of earthly lovers which does not even compare to the love between the speaker and his lover.

| Posted on 2007-02-07 | by a guest

.: The Planets :.

Personally, I belive that Donne likened the lovers to the planets. The same perfect spheres that are different entities but always remain the same. Their profound love is greater and finer than that of ordinary people. Their perfect spherical love belongs with the great planets and the stars. It is another conceit.

| Posted on 2006-07-22 | by Approved Guest

.: :.

This poem is a poem about true love between the speaker and their lover, not just the idea of love itself. The speaker turns the concept of death into a celebration of love. I says that their love is refind and above ordinary love because they are not only linked with their bodies but with their minds and their soulds. They are a pair of compasses two separate arms joind at the center to creat a perfect circle, or perfect love that will go on forever.

| Posted on 2005-03-03 | by Approved Guest

.: the meaning :.

trepidation of the spheares: an astronomical expression relating to the movement of the axis of the earth in relation to the sun which was formerly thought to cause the precission of the equinoxes (the slow but continual shifting of the equinnoctial points from east to west) the general sense is the earthquakes cause alarm, but the movement of the universe, though greater, does not. By analogy "ordinary" lovers may fear and lament their seperation, but we, who are superior to them, can take ours camly, for we are never really parted.

| Posted on 2005-01-09 | by Approved Guest

.: Departure :.

This poem is about departure. The speaker is telling his loved one that even though he is departing, he will still be with her. Their souls will be together and never separate. People do not understand the meaning of love and think little of it, but the speaker and his relationship is much stronger than the rest of the other relationships in the world. Theirs will hold together and never die. Death should not be thought of as an end , but as a beginning to something greater.

| Posted on 2004-12-11 | by Approved Guest

.: My Stance :.

This is about a couple who must part, however, he (the speaker, not John Donne) is telling his love that they are stronger than other couples in that their love is not idealistic. But rather, it is real. Much like other metaphysical poems, it consists of metaphysical conceits and of course it is divided up in a comparison between their love and others. That's just what I got out of it, but the IQ of the responses on this site seems incredibly low, so I think I'm going to part. Tah.

| Posted on 2004-12-09 | by Approved Guest

.: :.

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| Posted on 2004-12-08 | by Approved Guest

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