Shakespeare's Sonnets Questions
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why is the petrachan form suited to sonnet 18
The Petrarchan is the original and most common form of sonnet. The form comes from Italy, where the language has more rhymes than English. The poem is divided into two parts. The first eight lines present some argument or question. The next six lines change the rhyme pattern, and provide an answer or counterargument. A Petrarchan sonnet can be serious or funny.
William Shakespeare did not invent the sonnet form that bears his name, but he did write many of them. The Shakespearean sonnet is actually an adaptation of the Petrarchan sonnet. It is more suited to the English language. There are 14 lines in the Shakespearean sonnet. Three sets of four lines called "quatrains" are finished off with a "heroic couplet" of two lines. The last couplet usually has a twist or dramatic closing to the sonnet.
In the sonnet, the speaker compares his beloved to the summer season, and argues that his beloved is better. He also states that his beloved will live on forever through the words of the poem. Scholars have found parallels within the poem to Ovid's Tristia and Amores, both of which have love themes. Sonnet 18 is written in the typical Shakespearean sonnet form, having 14 lines of iambic pentameter ending in a rhymed couplet. Detailed exegeses have revealed several double meanings within the poem, giving it a greater depth of interpretation.
Sonnet 18 is a typical English or Shakespearean sonnet. It consists of three quatrains followed by a couplet, and has the characteristic rhyme scheme: abab cdcd efef gg. The poem carries the meaning of an Italian or Petrarchan Sonnet. Petrarchan sonnets typically discussed the love and beauty of a beloved, often an unattainable love, but not always. It also contains a volta, or shift in the poem's subject matter, beginning with the third quatrain.
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