Shakespeare | Sonnet 5 | Text with Critical Study

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Shakespeare | Sonnet 5 | Text with Critical Study

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Shakespeare  Sonnet 5  Text with Critical Study

Shakespeare | Sonnet 5 | A Critical Study

(Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5: Text, Analytical Study | Word Notes | Faqs)

Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5 – Text

Those hours, that with gentle work did frame
The lovely gaze where every eye doth dwell,
Will play the tyrants to the very same
And that unfair which fairly doth excel:
For never-resting time leads summer on
To hideous winter and confounds him there;
Sap cheque’d with frost and lusty leaves quite gone,
Beauty o’ersnow’d and bareness every where:
Then, were not summer’s distillation left,
A liquid prisoner pent in walls of glass,
Beauty’s effect with beauty were bereft,
Nor it nor no remembrance what it was:
But flowers distill’d though they with winter meet,
Leese but their show; their substance still lives sweet. 0 0 0.

Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5 – An Analytical Study

Theme:
Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5 is about the transience of beauty and the inevitability of time’s impact on it. The poet suggests that the beauty of the beloved will not last forever, and that the passing of time will lead to its decay and eventual disappearance. The sonnet discusses the idea that everything in life is temporary, and that time is a tyrant that steals beauty and youth.

The sonnet begins by acknowledging the beauty of the beloved that has been crafted through gentle work. However, the poet warns that time will play the tyrant to this beauty, turning the once-fair into something unfair. The speaker illustrates this point by comparing the progress of time to the progression of seasons, with summer inevitably leading to winter. The beauty of summer is described as being “oversnow’d” and “bareness everywhere” during winter, causing it to lose its charm and appeal.

In the final quatrain, the speaker suggests that the only way to preserve beauty is to capture it and distill it into a form that can withstand the effects of time. The image of a “liquid prisoner pent in walls of glass” suggests that beauty must be trapped and contained to prevent its inevitable decay. However, the speaker acknowledges that even this method has its limits, as the distillation only captures the outer appearance of beauty and not its true substance.

The sonnet ends on a hopeful note, with the speaker suggesting that while beauty may not last forever, its essence can be preserved through remembrance. The idea is that the flowers, which may lose their outward beauty in winter, still retain their sweet fragrance, which is remembered by those who appreciate them.

Literary Devices:
Shakespeare uses several literary devices in Sonnet 5 to emphasize his thematic points.

Metaphor: Shakespeare uses the metaphor of the changing seasons to illustrate the inevitability of time’s impact on beauty. He compares the progress of time to the progression of summer to winter, with the beauty of summer being destroyed by winter’s harsh conditions.

Personification: Time is personified as a tyrant in the sonnet, which reflects the idea that time is an unstoppable force that has the power to destroy everything, including beauty.

Imagery: The imagery in Sonnet 5 is powerful and evocative. The descriptions of summer’s beauty turning to winter’s harshness create a vivid picture of the transience of life and beauty.

Alliteration: Shakespeare uses alliteration in lines such as “Sap cheque’d with frost” to create a musical quality to the sonnet and emphasize his points.

Symbolism: The image of distilling flowers and beauty is a symbolic representation of the human desire to preserve that which is beautiful and fleeting.

Overall, Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5 is a powerful meditation on the transience of beauty and the inevitability of time’s impact on it. Through powerful imagery and metaphors, Shakespeare emphasizes the importance of remembering that which is beautiful and celebrating it while it lasts. 0 0 0.

Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5 – Word Notes

“ornament”: This word means decoration or embellishment, something that adds beauty or interest to a thing or person. In the sonnet, the speaker describes the young man’s beauty as an ornament that is fading away.

“livery”: This word refers to a uniform or distinctive clothing worn by servants or members of a household. In the sonnet, the speaker uses the word to describe the young man’s beauty as a uniform or livery that is being stripped away.

“death’s second self”: This phrase is a metaphor for sleep or oblivion, suggesting that death is like a second self that overtakes a person in the form of sleep or forgetfulness.

“blessed”: This word means holy or sacred, or to be favored by God or good fortune. In the sonnet, the speaker urges the young man to have children so that he may be blessed with the opportunity to pass on his beauty to future generations.

“chronicle”: This word means a historical record or account of events. In the sonnet, the speaker suggests that the young man’s beauty should be recorded in the chronicles of history through the children he produces.

“proportion”: This word refers to balance or harmony in design or appearance. In the sonnet, the speaker suggests that the young man’s beauty is perfectly proportioned, and therefore worthy of being preserved for future generations.

“beauty’s use”: This phrase refers to the purpose or function of beauty, which is to be appreciated and admired. In the sonnet, the speaker suggests that the young man’s beauty will be wasted if he does not have children to pass it on to.

Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5 -Faqs

Q: What is the meaning of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5?
A: Sonnet 5 is about the inevitability of time and the destruction it brings to beauty. The speaker urges the fair youth to have children to preserve his beauty and traits for future generations.

Q: What is the theme of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 5?
A: The theme of Sonnet 5 is the destructive power of time and the importance of procreation to preserve beauty and traits for future generations.

Q: What is the rhyme scheme of Sonnet 5?
A: Sonnet 5 has a traditional Shakespearean sonnet rhyme scheme of ABAB CDCD EFEF GG.

Q: What is the tone of Sonnet 5?
A: The tone of Sonnet 5 is serious and urgent. The speaker is trying to convince the fair youth to have children as a way to preserve his beauty and traits for future generations.

Q: Who is the fair youth in Sonnet 5?
A: The fair youth is a young man who is the subject of many of Shakespeare’s sonnets. He is admired by the speaker for his beauty, youthfulness, and other virtues.

Q: What literary devices are used in Sonnet 5?
A: Shakespeare uses several literary devices in Sonnet 5, including metaphor (“Time’s scythe”), personification (“Summer’s honey breath”), and alliteration (“breath against the stormy wind”). ***.

N.B. This article originally belongs to the book entitled ‘Shakespeare’s Sonnets-Critical Studies‘ by Menonim Menonimus.

Books of Literary Criticism by M. Menonimus:

  1. World Short Story Criticism
  2. World Poetry Criticism
  3. World Drama Criticism
  4. World Novel Criticism
  5. World Essay Criticism
  6. Indian English Poetry Criticism
  7. Indian English Poets and Poetry Chief Features
  8. Emily Dickinson’s Poetry-A Thematic Study
  9. Walt Whitman’s Poetry-A Thematic Study
  10. Critical Essays on English Poetry
  11. Tawfiq al-Hakim’s Novel: Return of the Spirit-An Analytical Study
  12. Tawfiq al-Hakim’s Novel: ‘Yawmiyyat Naib Fil Arayaf’-An Analytical Study
  13. Analytical Studies of Some Arabic Short Stories
  14. A Brief History of Arabic Literature: Pre-Islamic Period (500 AD-622 AD)
  15. A Brief History of Arabic Literature: Early Islamic Period (622 AD-661 AD)
  16. Reviews on William Shakespeare’s Works
  17. Reviews of Charles Dickens’ Works
  18. Reviews of John Milton’s Literary Works
  19. Reviews of Some Iconic Travelogues
  20. Shakespeare’s Sonnets-Critical Studies

Additional Searches:

  1. Shakespeare’s Sonnets-Study Guide
  2. Shakespeare’s Sonnets
  3. Shakespeare Sonnets
  4. The Elizabethan Sonnet Sequence
  5. Thematic Study of Shakespeare’s Sonnets
  6. Shakespeare’s Sonnet 1
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Menonimus
I am Menonim Menonimus, a Philosopher & Writer.

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