Shakespeare | Sonnet 1 | Text with Critical Study
Shakespeare | Sonnet 1 | A Critical Study
Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1: Text, Analytical Study | Word Notes | Faqs
Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1-Text
From fairest creatures we desire increase,
That thereby beauty’s rose might never die,
But as the riper should by time decrease,
His tender heir mught bear his memeory:
But thou, contracted to thine own bright eyes,
Feed’st thy light’st flame with self-substantial fuel,
Making a famine where abundance lies,
Thyself thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel.
Thou that art now the world’s fresh ornament
And only herald to the gaudy spring,
Within thine own bud buriest thy content
And, tender churl, makest waste in niggarding.
Pity the world, or else this glutton be,
To eat the world’s due, by the grave and thee.
Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1- An Analytical Study
Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1 is a poem that explores the themes of beauty, time, and selfishness. The speaker begins by acknowledging humanity’s desire for procreation as a means of preserving beauty for future generations. The “fairest creatures” represent the ideal of beauty that people want to pass on to their offspring. The imagery of the “beauty’s rose” that should never die suggests the fragility of beauty and the inevitability of its decline over time.
The second quatrain introduces a contrast to the theme of procreation and preservation of beauty. The speaker addresses an individual who is “contracted to thine own bright eyes,” meaning that the person is self-absorbed and obsessed with their own beauty. They are “feeding” their own ego with their vanity, creating a “famine where abundance lies” by denying others the opportunity to appreciate their beauty. This selfishness is contrasted with the theme of procreation and the preservation of beauty for future generations.
The third quatrain continues the contrast by addressing the individual’s “bud” which represents their potential to create new life and beauty. However, instead of sharing their beauty with the world, they “bury” it within themselves and waste it by being stingy. The use of the word “churl” emphasizes the person’s greed and lack of generosity.
The final couplet is a warning to this individual, urging them to consider the world around them and the importance of procreation. If they continue to prioritize their own beauty over everything else, they will be seen as a glutton who has consumed the world’s resources without giving anything back.
In terms of literary devices, the sonnet is written in iambic pentameter, with a rhyme scheme of abab cdcd efef gg. Shakespeare uses a variety of metaphors and imagery, such as the “beauty’s rose” and the individual’s “bud,” to convey his themes. He also uses personification, such as the personified “famine,” to emphasize the destructive nature of the individual’s selfishness. The use of contrasting themes and imagery in the sonnet creates a tension that drives the speaker’s plea for generosity and consideration for the world beyond oneself. 0 0 0.
Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1-Word-Notes
From fairest creatures we desire increase:
“Fairest creatures” refers to beautiful people, particularly women. “Desire increase” means to want them to reproduce and have children.
That thereby beauty’s rose might never die:
“Thereby” means “by means of this,” and “beauty’s rose” is a metaphor for beauty itself. The line means that if beautiful people have children, their beauty will live on through future generations.
But as the riper should by time decease:
“Riper” means more mature or advanced in age. “Decease” means to die or pass away. The line suggests that as people age, they eventually die and their beauty fades away.
His tender heir might bear his memory:
“Tender heir” refers to a young child who inherits someone’s qualities, such as their beauty or intelligence. “Bear his memory” means to carry on their legacy or reputation.
But thou contracted to thine own bright eyes:
“Contracted” means limited or confined. “Thine own bright eyes” refers to the speaker’s love interest, who is so focused on their own beauty that they are not interested in having children to pass on their traits.
Feed’st thy light’s flame with self-substantial fuel:
“Feeds’t” means to nourish or sustain. “Light’s flame” refers to the love interest’s beauty or radiance. “Self-substantial fuel” means that the love interest is so self-absorbed that they sustain their own beauty without the need for children.
Making a famine where abundance lies:
This line means that the love interest’s refusal to have children is causing a lack of beauty in the world, even though there are many beautiful people around.
Thyself thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel:
This final line means that the love interest is being cruel to themselves by not having children to carry on their beauty, and ultimately harming their own legacy.
Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1-Faqs
Q: What is Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1 about?
A: Sonnet 1 is an introductory sonnet in which the speaker urges the young man to procreate so that his beauty may be immortalized. The sonnet also establishes the poet’s theme of the passing of time and the importance of procreation.
Q: What is the rhyme scheme of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The rhyme scheme of Sonnet 1 is ABAB CDCD EFEF GG, which is typical of Shakespearean sonnets.
Q: Who is the “begetter” mentioned in the first line of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The “begetter” refers to the person who will beget or father the young man’s child.
Q: What is the metaphor used in the second line of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The metaphor used in the second line is “beauty’s rose,” which compares the young man’s beauty to a rose.
Q: What is the meaning of the phrase “summer’s lease” in Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The phrase “summer’s lease” refers to the fleeting nature of time, and how the beauty of summer is temporary and will eventually come to an end.
Q: Who is the speaker addressing in Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The speaker is addressing the young man, who is the subject of many of Shakespeare’s sonnets.
Q: What is the purpose of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The purpose of Sonnet 1 is to introduce the main themes of the sequence of sonnets, which include the passing of time, the importance of procreation, and the beauty of the young man.
Q: What is the tone of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The tone of Sonnet 1 is urgent and persuasive, as the speaker urges the young man to procreate before his beauty fades.
Q: How many syllables are in each line of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1?
A: The lines of Sonnet 1 are written in iambic pentameter, which means that each line has ten syllables. ***.
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