© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
 

Analysis


Symbols, Imagery, Wordplay

Sonnet 2 opens with a metaphor that compares the way time wears away a person's face to the way an army attacks a castle. It used to be that if you were holed up in your castle, you were pretty muc...

Form and Meter

There are lots of different ways to write a sonnet, which is basically just a particular kind of short poem. Shakespeare's sonnets have a very specific form, though, and scholars have named that fo...

Speaker

Have you ever stayed up too late at night watching TV, and hit that point where it's all half-hour infomercials with scary people trying to sell you something that you don't really need? We don't m...

Setting

There are lots of ways of looking at the main pitch in this poem. What it boils down to is that the speaker (who we imagine being a little older and wiser) is trying to straighten out the young man...

Sound Check

In the "Speaker" section, we talk about how we see the speaker of this poem as a kind of cheesy salesman pushing a product. That may be true, but this isn't necessarily a loud poem. A sales pitch c...

What's Up With the Title?

Shakespeare didn't give his sonnets titles, but that doesn't mean that the numbers we use to refer to them are random. In fact, the 154 sonnets that Shakespeare wrote are grouped together by theme,...

Calling Card

Shakespeare's sonnets all share the same form, that is to say the same number of lines, the same rhyme scheme, etc. (Check out "Form and Meter" for the specifics.) What's more, he wrote 16 other so...

Tough-O-Meter

A few of the lines in Sonnet 2 are tricky, and the extended metaphors can take a bit of piecing together. On the whole though, the main idea of this poem is pretty simple and clearly stated, so thi...

Brain Snacks

Sex Rating

We actually think there's a lot of sex under the surface in this poem. The speaker certainly seems pretty into this young man's beauty, and words like "lusty" and "gazed on" seem to pop up a little...
Advertisement
Advertisement
back to top