Glass in Shakespeare's Sonnet #3
The careful craft and design of poetry condenses the amount of text needed to convey information. This is true of all art, in that pieces are often qualitatively judged by how much they "say." Good works may carry one or two levels of meaning hidden behind their lines, but a masterpiece holds an infinite amount of knowledge masked in the spaces between words. Lettersmiths such as Shakespeare, Keats, and Albee construct in their pieces vast symbolic subsystems that interact within the confines of the work's consciousness. The actualization of a poet's conception is likened to the infinity of two mirrors facing each other. As one moves toward a masterpiece (studying it) more layers are revealed and one is able to see the boundless possibilities of its analysis. As is the case with "glass" in Shakespeare's sonnet number three, one word can flip meanings and resonate with clarity the soul of the masterpiece.
In Victorian times the word glass, while still retaining its current day meaning, could easily reference a mirror or reflective surfaces like water. Sonnet number three uses these meanings to show the paradox of legacies. The word appears and is referred to both literally and metaphorically. It is...
Join Now to View Premium Content
GradeSaver provides access to 882 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 6869 literature essays, 1855 sample college application essays, 279 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.
Already a member? Log in