Andrew has actually a keen attention in all elements of poetry and also writes generally on the subject. His poems are published online and also in print.

You are watching: When the speaker in sonnet 55 mentions this powerful rhyme he is referring to


*

William Shakespeare and A summary of Sonnet 55

Sonnet 55 is all around the endurance the love, kept within the indigenous of the sonnet itself. It will certainly outlive product things together as cool palaces, royal buildings and fine, sculptured stone; it will certainly outlive war and time itself, even to judgement day.


This is due to the fact that the city will constantly be a 'living record', the memory of love will stay alive within the sonnet, come what may. The results of time, the damaging forces of war - they count for nothing.

This idea, the love, memory and also spirit being kept alive in the created word, is old and goes earlier at least to Ovid in his Metamorphoses.

Shakespeare was indeed inspired by this but his sonnets space still shrouded in mystery. We know he created them in ~ a time when England to be going through social and spiritual chaos in the late 16th century but scholars have no clear idea that he wrote them for.


Was he straight inspired by the fair youth and the dark lady? Or were they produced for royalty and also those aristocrats who sponsored plays? space the sonnets merely the work-related of a dramatic poet in love with love itself and also who had read Ovid, Horace and Homer and also other classics?

They are definitely love sonnets yet exactly which kind of love is open to inquiry - the Greeks had eight different words for each aspect of love, among them Eros (sexual passion) and also Agape (love for everyone).

Sonnet 55 is a curious mix the both. It might well be influenced by a personal friend the the poet's. Equally, it could allude to a divine being - to speak Venus - or the heart of the goddess in ~ a real male or female.


Summary that Sonnet 55

The very first quatrain states that, uneven fine rock and monuments that space subject to distasteful time, the sonnet itself will certainly be love's timeless vehicle.

The 2nd quatrain introduce the idea the war and destruction could not damage the memory of love that live on.

The 3rd quatrain continues the design template of everlasting love on right into the future until the civilization ends.

The couplet underlines the previous sentiments. You will increase again ~ above judgement day however for now you live in this words.


Sonnet 55


*

Sonnet 55


Analysis of Sonnet 55 line by Line

Not mar / ble nor / the guil / ded mon / uments

Interestingly this sonnet starts off v a negative, the adverb not, introducing the leader to think around what is not necessary in life, i m sorry is fine rock and do stonework. Keep in mind the dual alliteration and the allusion to grand palaces.

This is iambic pentameter, five feet the unstressed climate stressed syllable, English poetry's most dominant metre (meter in USA). Shakespeare supplies it a lot of in his sonnets but likewise mixes it up through spondee and trochee - watch the end for the changes.

Note likewise the enjambment, the very first line moving on straight into the second, no punctuation.

Of princes shall outlive this powerful rhyme;

So the stone work is royal, or in ~ least, belongs to a young imperial male. Is this a clue as to who the sonnet is composed for? one more young male, but not a prince? Or is this generic royal stone? Either means this material doesn't obtain to outlive the strength of this poetry.


Again iambic pentameter is come the fore, with assonance and also alliteration in evidence.

But you shall shine more bright in these contents

The 3rd line help the reader placed things in perspective because now there is a person or number involved...you shall shine...in the contents of the poem, which will endure.

Note the alliteration again and also the trochee i m sorry comes as a surprise after the secure iambics - however contents is pronounced through the stress on the con - and leaves a feminine finishing with enjambment.

Than unswept stone, besmeared with sluttish time.

Time is here provided a physical quality, unusually, and also the word sluttish is linked with the civilization of whores and also dubious morals. The suggestion is that product things eventually come to be dirtied and also degraded however that this will certainly not happen to the person.


Regular iambics returns. Keep in mind the importance of the letter s. Besmear is to cover with a sticky or greasy substance.

More analysis Line by Line

When wasteful war shall statues overturn,

Start of the second quatrain acquisition the reader in to the battle zone, through an immediate complete on alliterative opening photo - the symbols are falling together the stable iambic rate echoes the of marching foot soldiers.

And broils source out the work the masonry,

The war against property proceeds in the 6th line. Broil way chaos and also commotion, also battles, and root out is to gain to the bottom that or destruction up, so an ext violence is express here, aimed in ~ the stonework again, never humanity.


The variation on a layout of the letter o is nowhere far better exemplified than in this line.

Nor Mars his sword nor war's quick fire candlestick burn

The god Mars enters the fray, timeless Roman god that war. Venus was his consort. A parallel through the opening an unfavorable Not, no one places emphasis on what the sword and also quick fire can not do.

A splendid line, every word a solitary syllable, the whole line a joy to review as the anaphora (repeated native or phrase) of no one Mars....nor war's is an echo nearly of the battlefield. Again, pure iambics through enjambment for good measure, smoothly acquisition the leader to the following line.

The living record of your memory.

No matter the violence that future war and also military strife, what will certainly prevail is the positive around you, so lively in memory.

Further Analysis

'Gainst death and also all-oblivious enmity

Praise proceeds in the third quatrain, the speaker clearly declaring that even death and ignorant hostility won't stand in his lover's way.

See more: " The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down Sheet Music In A Minor (Transposable)

** heat 9 is a difficulty because the iambics room not fairly as clear and the syllabics of all-oblivious enmity demand mindful attention indigenous the reader. You have the right to scan 'Gainst death and also all-oblivious enmity as a complete eleven rate ('Gainst death and also all-ob-liv-i-ous enmity) which i do not care 4 iambs and a dactyl or continuous ten rate ('Gainst death and also all-ob-liv-ious enmity) which i do not care 4 iambs and also a pyrrhic.