The speaker proclaims that Death is nothing more than a powerless, serene slave that everyone will experience. John Donne personifies death as mortal and something that should not be feared or dreaded. The poem basically discusses victory over death. Death is not as strong as people make it out to be. People are only afraid of death because it is something that is hard to comprehend and accept. Nothing is immortal and neither are you.
In the first quatrain Death is being exposed as powerless. Some people have called Death “Mighty and dreadful” but the speaker expresses that is not true about death. The speaker puts Death in its place by saying “for thou art not so”. Death doesn’t accept the fact that he doesn’t have power over us. The speaker makes death realize that he has not overthrown anyone, and that even though people die it was not due to any power held by death. While addressing the poem to Death, the speaker uses a very commanding tone towards death. The speaker verbalizes their pity on Death “poor death” showing that he belittles death. The speaker declares that Death cannot overthrow anyone. If Death was so powerful it would have been removed everyone from this earth, including the speaker. Death does not have power; death is only the end result of life.
In the second quatrain Death is seen as a serene moment that everyone experiences. The speaker compares Death to rest and sleep which is a picture of Death itself. Rest and sleep are just like death in appearance. We enjoy sleep and rest more than from you because you always unexpected at us. Death takes away the best of our people and we just picture them sleeping but their bones stay here and their souls go to heaven. One day we all will have to travel to the
journey of Death and experience Death ourselves. Even the best of us don’t fear you they will get to rest and sleep. Death allows our body to finally find rest.
In the third quatrain the speaker describes Death as being slave to...
...The HolySonnets By making many references to the Bible, John Donne’s HolySonnets reveal his want to be accepted and forgiven by God. A fear of death without God’s forgiveness of sins is conveyed in these sonnets. Donne expresses extreme anxiety and fright that Satan has taken over his soul and God won’t forgive him for it or his sins. A central theme of healing and forgiveness imply that John Donne, however much he wrote about God and being holy, wasn’t such a holy man all of the time and tried to make up for it in his writing.
In sonnet 1, the speaker is talking to God. He tells God that his death is near. He feels that with all of the sins he has committed he is leaning towards hell instead of heaven. Satan has tempted him too much and he doesn’t know if he can even go an hour without giving in to Satan’s evil ways. The speaker asks God to give him wings so that he may ascend into heaven and prevent Satan from taking him to hell. There is a sense of manipulation in the speaker in the beginning of the sonnet. “Thou hast made me, and shall thy work decay?” In other words, “You’re making your own creation look bad if you don’t help me to become holy again.” This starts out the sonnet with a bitter tone, a favorable way for Donne to begin. But...
...Annotation John Donne’s
If poisonous minerals, and if that tree,
Whose fruit threw death on (else immortal) us,
If lecherous goats, if serpents envious
Cannot be dammed, alas ! why should I be ?
Why should intent or reason, born in me,
Make sins, else equal, in me more heinous ?
And, mercy being easy, and glorious
To God, in His stern wrath why threatens He ?
But who am I, that dare dispute with Thee ?
O God, O ! of Thine only worthy blood,
And my tears, make a heavenly Lethean flood,
And drown in it my sin's black memory.
That Thou remember them, some claim as debt ;
I think it mercy if Thou wilt forget.
1 If poisonous minerals, and if that tree,
2 Whose fruit threw death on (else immortal) us,
3 If lecherous goats, if serpents envious
4 Cannot be dammed, alas ! why should I be ?
5 Why should intent or reason, born in me,
6 Make sins, else equal, in me more heinous ?
7 And, mercy being easy, and glorious
8 To God, in His stern wrath why threatens He ?
9 But who am I, that dare dispute with Thee ?
10 O God, O ! of Thine only worthy blood,
11 And my tears, make a heavenly Lethean flood,
12 And drown in it my sin's black memory.
13 That Thou remember them, some claim as
14 I think it mercy if Thou wilt forget.
oSonnet has a rhyme scheme of
oShows emphasis on line...
...UNIVERSIDAD DE ZARAGOZA
27820 LITERATURA INGLESA II
Death, be not proud
John Donne (1572 – 1631) was an English poet of the early 17th century. He was also a
satirist, a lawyer and a cleric of the Church of England. Born in a Roman Catholic
family, he became an Anglican priest as King James I ordered so. He is considered to be
the representative of the metaphysical poets along with George Herbert or Andrew
Marvell among others. This metaphysical poetry deals with abstract topics such as love
or religion. Some of his works include sonnets, love and religious poems, Latin
translations, elegies, satires and sermons. Donne died in 1631 due to an unconfirmed
stomach cancer and he stays buried at St. Paul’s Cathedral.
The poem analysed ‘X’ is part of a collection of nineteen poems known as the
HolySonnets. They were published in 1633 and the title, X, has to do with the position
occupied in the collection.
The sonnet is about how the poetic speaker tries to discredit Death, who is,
treated as a person, by telling him not to be proud as he is not as scary or invincible as
he think he is and that, after all, death is just another step to reach the eternal life and
once Eternity is achieved, the Death itself will have died. This sonnet belongs to the
metaphysical poetry because it mainly talks about death, a topic which is highly...
...DONNE'S HOLYSONNET XIV
Batter my heart, three person'd God; for, you
As yet but knocke, breathe, shine, and seeke to mend;
That I may rise, and stand, o'erthrow me, 'and bend
Your force, to breake, blowe, burn and make me new.
I, like an usurpt towne, t'another due,
Labor to 'admit you, but Oh, to no end,
Reason your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captiv'd, and proves weake or untrue,
Yet dearely'I love you, and would be lov'd faine,
But am betroth'd unto your enemy,
Divorce me, 'untie, or breake that knot againe
Take me to you, imprison me, for I
Except you 'enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.
The analogous language of romantic passion ("I am my Beloved's and my Beloved is mine" [Song Sol. 2.16, New International Version]) and intellectual paradox ("Whoever will lose his life for my sake will find it" [Matt. 10.39, NIV]) has always seemed natural to those seeking to understand and speak of spiritual mysteries. Even so, John Donne's image of the Divine Rape in the "HolySonnet XIV," by which the victim becomes, or remains, chaste is at first startling; we are not accustomed to such spiritual intensity. Previous explications have attempted to downplay this figure; for example, Thomas J. Steele, SJ [The Explicator 29 (1971): 74], maintains that the "sexual meaning" is "a secondary meaning" and "probably not meant to be explicitly...
...5 – Paragraph Poetry Devices Analysis Essay
The poem “HolySonnet #10” by John Donne is one of the most respected forms of poetry, one of the most difficult to compose and one of the most inspirational to read. Donne uses personification, metaphor and rhetorical question to demonstrate the deep personal meaning of the poem. Donne writes passionately about his feelings towards death. Donne has decided to include these three literary devices in his poem to create a more dramatic effect for his readers.
The first literary device to catch the reader’s attention is personification. Personification is the most important and powerful poetic device used in the “HolySonnet #10”. It is mainly used when describing death, personification captures the entire purpose of the poem at each point and Donne’s feelings are displayed very thoroughly at these points. For example, in the very first 2 lines of the poem he writes, “[d]eath, be not proud, though some have called thee” (1) “[m]ighty and dreadful, for thou are not so;” (2). Donne describes how people think of death as “Mighty and dreadful” (2). “Mighty” shows the possible power of death over all living things, and “dreadful” shows the suffering of people, how much there terrified of death. By using personification to address death directly, as though it were a person, allows the reader to easily communicate his/her feelings towards it....
...John Donne is widely known to incorporate or allude to various religious symbols and concepts throughout his poems. His poem “HolySonnet XII: Why Are We” questions the concept of creation, humankind and all elements, exploring the ideas of the original sin and God’s relationship with man and nature. The poem also explored the concepts of human supremacy over nature. Through several language devices such as metaphors, rhyme and rhythm, repetition and tone, Donne attempts to understand the Creator’s motives for creating humans and the various elements present in the world. Donne also employed rhetoric to convince and demonstrate to readers mankind’s dominance over nature and natural elements.
Donne employed an inquiring even a perplexed-sounding tone to his poem to imply a sense of injustice within the Creator. This sense of injustice revolved around subjecting animals, who are “simple, and further from corruption” and more powerful, for the convenience of man, who is corrupt and is “worse than” the animals: “Why are wee by all creatures waited on? ... Why brook’st thou, ignorant horse, subjection” With the inquiring tone, Donne attempted to reveal the Creator to be someone prejudiced, where he is previously believed to be all just and fair. Donne implied an idea of favouritism in the last few lines of the stanza: “You have not sinn’d, nor need to be timorous ... For us, his Creatures, and his foes, hath dyed.” In these lines, Donne alluded...
Although Elizabethan times are characterized by romantic and highly ornamented poetry devoted to the exploration of the human feelings, there was also a group of bold poets in the 17th Century who took their words to a rather analytical side of the abstracts aspects of life. John Donne, one of Metaphysical Poetry’s main figures, stands out for his choice of simple words to approach more complex themes of life. In ‘‘HolySonnet10’’, Donne brings Death to human level in which he strongly criticizes it for being inferior to other mortal pleasures.
Donne’s boldness is emphasized as he alters the English sonnet’s structure to fit his own theme. The poet combines the basic structure of 3 quatrains and a couplet with the rhyming scheme of a Petrarchan sonnet in the first three quatrains. The most unusual rhyme though, is the couplet AE in which he brings back his principal claim and intertwines it with his conclusion, and at the same time he accentuates it with a line that does not rhyme with any other. This provokes the turn of the sonnet to be at the middle of the conclusion rather than in line 9, another daring aspect of the sonnet. This particular rhyme scheme gives each stanza its own rhythm, leading the reader into a strong emphatic conclusion.
The sonnet’s metaphysical conceit refers to Death’s personification. The poet attempts...