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Symbols, Imagery, Wordplay
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How to Read a Poem
Symbolism, Imagery, Wordplay
Sum my count
Table of Contents
Sonnet 2 Symbolism, Imagery & Wordplay
There’s more to a poem than meets the eye.
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...
In general, "proud livery" means fancy clothes that are beautiful and showy. It has a more specific meaning, too. The servants of a nobleman during the Renaissance would wear livery, which was a un...
When you see people who are really good looking, do you think of them as actually owning something worth having? A pretty face isn't like money in the bank, but it is a precious possession that peo...
How's this for a sad, haunting image of what old age is like? The phrase "thine own deep-sunken eyes" is meant to stand for the opposite of everything that is beautiful about the young man, and to...
One thing Shakespeare is a master of is the intense adjective. He can take an idea that you're pretty familiar with, like shame, and tack on another word to make you understand it in a new way. Hav...
Sum my count
This idea of the young man summing his father's "count" takes us back to the metaphor of beauty as "treasure" in line 6. Again the big idea here is that beauty becomes a lot like money, and turns i...
This is the big payoff for the whole poem. The idea is that you can almost be born again by having a baby. When you look at your child, you see yourself, only young and healthy and beautiful again....
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