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Upon Julia's Clothes

Upon Julia's Clothes

by Robert Herrick

Love Theme

It sure seems like the speaker of "Upon Julia's Clothes" is in love with Julia; the very fact that he calls her "my Julia" (1) suggests a little romance. But of course the poem is really about her clothes, and it's the way the speaker describes those clothes that reveals his true feelings. The poem is interested in the question of how our feelings for someone affect the way we imagine them and their clothes.

Questions About Love

  1. Does the speaker love Julia? How do you know? (Or not know.)
  2. Do you think the speaker is so obsessed with Julia's clothes because he loves her? Or does his fascination with her clothes lead to his feelings?
  3. How do you think Julia might feel about all this? Do you think she'd be weirded out by his focus on her outfit? Annoyed that he can't seem to describe the person underneath? Totally flattered?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

This speaker doesn't love Julia. Not even close. He just thinks she's hot.

His obsession with her clothes (material possessions), and the fact that he calls her "my Julia" tells us that this speaker doesn't love her; he just views her as a trophy. Not cool dude.

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