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Shakespeare Sonnet 109 Diction

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In his time, William Shakespeare, wrote 154 sonnets that chronicled, what most believe, to be his interaction with two people for whom he wrote sonnets in exchange for money, or perhaps for a loved one. The first sections of sonnets are believed to be written to the Earl of Southampton, Henry Wriothesley. The other half is believed to be written for a mysterious woman, known as “The Dark Lady”. These sonnets talk about many things: beauty, forgiveness, brevity of life, etc, in order to express and show his love and desire for his beloved, to whom these sonnets are addressed to. Through his use of dramatic imagery, allusions, and antithesis Shakespeare’s sonnet 109 suggests that despite unfaithfulness, love is a unifying bond that can never truly be broken. In sonnet 109, Shakespeare promotes the theme of the power of the love he holds for his beloved, despite his apparent unfaithfulness and/or lack of expression of it. He begins the sonnet with a plea of sorts,…show more content…
The narrator then goes on to solidify the fear of separation and establishes unfaithfulness in this quatrain saying “if I have ranged,/Like him that travels I return again,/Just to the time, not with the time exchanged,/So that myself bring water for my stain.” (5-8) In the first part, he alludes to a traveler that has “ranged”, possibly alluding to the many Greek epics of heroes being away from home, and their loved ones. Although he has returned just in time to save his love, because nothing with him has changed; but with “water for my stain”. The image of water being used to clean a stain is a metaphor for him using his love to amend for his unfaithfulness to his beloved. This validates and completes the first line of the sonnet; the falseness of heart is solidified in the image of cleaning the stain with something as pure as water, like his
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