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Death, be not proud (Holy Sonnet 10)

Death, be not proud (Holy Sonnet 10)

by John Donne

Birth

Symbol Analysis

There’s only one example, and it’s a play on words, but we wanted to give Birth a little love, too, because it’s nothing but Death, Death, Death for most of the poem.

  • Line 8: It’s a pun! Sweet! To "deliver" someone can mean to set them free, as in the Lord’s Prayer: "Deliver us from evil...." But, the speaker also wants to be "delivered" into the afterlife, like a baby is "delivered" into the world during birth. The comparison of death to rebirth is such a common metaphor that we rarely even think of it as a being a metaphor.

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