Comparison: Shakespeare’s Sonnets and Sonnet

Compare and Contrast Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 by William Shakespeare In this essay I am going to highlight the comparisons and contrasts between William Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 and also give my opinions. A similarity between the two poems is that they are both about a man’s love for a woman. Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate: Meaning that the woman that Shakespeare loves in Sonnet 18 is ‘more lovely’ than a ‘summer’s day’ and she is just right for him, as summer can sometimes be too hot. In Sonnet 130, it’s also about Shakespeare’s love for a woman.
And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare As any she belied with false compare. This shows that Shakespeare still loves the woman that the poem is about. Even though in the rest of the poem Shakespeare highlights all of her bad points. My Mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun; Coral is far more red than her lips red; This means that the woman’ s eyes in this poem are nowhere near as bright as the sun and her lips aren’t as red as coral, but even though she has her bad points, Shakespeare still loves her. This shows that Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 are similar in the way they are both about Shakespeare’s love for a woman.
Another comparison between Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 is that in both the poems Shakespeare uses metaphors to describe the two women in the poems. Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate: Here, Shakespeare compares the woman to a summers day and says that she is ‘more lovely and more temperate’ meaning that the woman is not too hot or not too cold. Shakespeare also uses metaphors in Sonnet 130. If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun; This compares the woman’s skin in Sonnet 130 to the colour of snow.

This shows that a comparison between Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 is that they both do use metaphors. Another comparison of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 is, in the sonnets, the women aren’t named. Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? In Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18, Shakespeare calls the woman he talks about ‘thee’ and in Sonnet 130 the woman is also anonymous. My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun; In Sonnet 130 Shakespeare calls the woman ‘his mistress’. This shows that another comparison between the two poems is that the women in both of them are anonymous.
One of the differences between Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 is that in Sonnet 18, Shakespeare highlights the woman’s beauty, but in Sonnet 130, Shakespeare highlights the woman’s faults. But thy eternal summer shall not fade, Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st, Here, in Sonnet 18, Shakespeare is saying that the woman’s beauty never fades whereas summer fades after a while. In Sonnet 130 Shakespeare highlights the woman’s bad points. Coral is far more red than her lips’ red; Here Shakespeare is saying that the woman’s lips aren’t red like coral, which to Shakespeare is a bad thing, which he highlights.
This proves that a difference between Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 is that in Sonnet 18 he highlights the woman’s good features, whereas in Sonnet 130 Shakespeare highlights the woman’s bad features. Another difference between the two sonnets is that in Sonnet 18 Shakespeare pays the woman lots of complements, whereas in Sonnet 130 Shakespeare insults the woman. So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see, So long lives this, and this gives life to thee. This is a complement from Sonnet 18, which means, as long as people can see and as long as she is alive she will be beautiful and full of life.
In Sonnet 130 though, Shakespeare insults the woman. And in some perfumes is there more delight Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks. This insult from Sonnet 130 is saying that perfumes smell a lot better than his wife’s breath. This shows that a difference between Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 is that in Sonnet 18 Shakespeare complements the woman, whereas in Sonnet 130, Shakespeare insults the woman. My view is that these two sonnets are both love poems. I think in Sonnet 130 Shakespeare insults and highlights the woman’s bad points, but he still loves the woman he talks about.
And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare As any she belied with false compare. This means that in Shakespeare’s Sonnet 130, even though all of the woman’s bad points he still loves her. In Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 Shakespeare highlights the woman’s good points and says how beautiful she is. Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate: This shows one of the complements that Shakespeare pays the woman in Sonnet 18. This shows that both the sonnets are love poems. In this essay I have highlighted similarities and differences between Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 and Sonnet 130 and gave my opinion of them.

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