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Analysis of William Shakespeare's Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer's Day?

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Analysis of William Shakespeare's Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?

William Shakespeare's Shall I compare thee to a summer's day is one of his most notable sonnets. There are one hundred and fifty-four sonnets but this one is probably the most famous. It is a beautiful love poem that is so eloquently written without being too hard to comprehend. After further researching this sonnet, I discovered that the person he is referencing, his "beloved" is a man. I am unaware if Shakespeare was speaking from his own life or if he was speaking for someone else. Whatever it may be I still believe that this is an adoring poem that will stand the test of time.

The poem begins with a question "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" (Shakespeare 762) and the rest of the poem is dedicated to answering that question and comparing his beloved to a summer's day. Let's analyze the poem by dissecting some the lines. The second line of the poem says "Thou art more lovely and more temperate" (Shakespeare) which means that his beloved is more lovely and constant that summer. In the fourth line, the speaker states that "And summer's lease hath all too short a date" (Shakespeare) meaning that the season of summer is too short. The fifth line says "Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines" signifies that the summer sun is too hot sometimes. Towards the end of the poem he begins to make reference to how beautiful and youthful his lover is. Take line seven and eight, the speaker says that "And every fair from fair sometime declines, By chance or nature's changing course, untrimmed" (Shakespeare) which denotes that everything that is beautiful will lose its splendor over time either by tragedy or nature running its course. This is avid observation. It's one of those saying that no matter how you state it its still universal no matter the time period or era it's being stated in. In the ninth line the speaker is now trying more than ever to "woo" his beloved. The speakers states "But thy eternal summer shall not fade" (Shakespeare) which means that his lover's youth will never fade. I think that the speaker has an infatuation with young men because he references the lover's youth on several occasions.

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