Shakespeare's Sonnets

Beauty, As Expressed By Shakespeare's Sonnet 18

Beauty, irrefutably, is a common theme throughout the Shakespearean sonnets. Generally, Shakespeare's love of beauty is expressed with regard to an undefined person, or muse. Nowhere is the beauty of Shakespeare's muse expressed more strongly than throughout his Sonnet 18. As tribute to the magnificence of his muse's beauty, which is described as more glorious than even nature's seasons, Shakespeare makes a point of supplementing this beauty by preserving and immortalizing it through the lines of Sonnet 18.

Before Shakespeare's muse, or "Dark Lady's" beauty can be immortalized, its grandeur must first be fully understood. Shakespeare wastes no time in undertaking the task conveying this beauty, and strategically does so through his first line, which he phrases as a question. "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" It is clear that answering this question will be the Sonnet's purpose, and Shakespeare begins to do so immediately, with line 2: "Thou art more lovely and more temperate." This line not only answers the question put forth by line 1, but begins to set the poem's theme: that Shakespeare's Dark Lady is indeed more beautiful and magnificent than the...

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