Methought I Saw my Late Espoused Saint (Sonnet 23)
by John Milton
Methought I Saw my Late Espoused Saint (Sonnet 23) Questions
Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.
- Why does the poem start by describing the speaker's vision using a series of similes, rather than directly describing the vision itself? What is the effect of this strategy upon our understanding of the vision of his wife?
- Did the speaker actually see his wife? How can you tell?
- Why does the embrace between the speaker and the vision fail? Why is this the moment the speaker wakes up?
- Do you agree with people who think Milton is the speaker of this poem? Why or why not? How does this belief change our interpretation of it?
- Why does the speaker, a Christian, choose to describe his vision using similes from Greek mythology and the Hebrew Bible at the beginning of the poem?
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