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Whoso List to Hunt by Thomas Wyatt

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Arturo Jacobo

on 7 April 2014

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Transcript of Whoso List to Hunt by Thomas Wyatt

Thomas Wyatt
Analysis
"Whoso list to hunt, I know where is an hind,
But as for me, hélas, I may no more.
The vain travail hath wearied me so sore,
I am of them that farthest cometh behind.
Yet may I by no means my wearied mind
Draw from the deer, but as she fleeth afore
Fainting I follow. I leave off therefore,
Sithens in a net I seek to hold the wind.
Who list her hunt, I put him out of doubt,
As well as I may spend his time in vain.
And graven with diamonds in letters plain
There is written, her fair neck round about:
Noli me tangere, for Caesar's I am,
And wild for to hold, though I seem tame."
Whoso List to Hunt by Thomas Wyatt
1503-1542
Born at Allington Castle in Kent England
From a wealthy family
Served as King Henry VIII's ambassador to Italy and France
His trips abroad introduced him to poetry and influenced his writings
Breakdown: Line 1
Richard Tottle published "Whoso List to Hunt" in 1557
In 1522, Wyatt fell in love with Ann Boleyn
However, a couple years after, King Henry VIII also fell in love with her and married her
Thomas Wyatt depicts a hunt for a female deer
Ann Boleyn is the deer, while the hunters are her many suitors of Henry VIII's court
Wyatt is conveying his feelings of anger and disappointment towards the marriage of Boleyn and Henry
All of the hunters are feverishly chasing after the deer, while Wyatt slowly gives up and turns to a state of dismay
He has given up because he can't compete with the King
"Whoso list to hunt, I know where is an hind,"
Wyatt is addressing those who want to hunt
He says that he knows where they can find a deer
"whoso": whoever
"list": desires, needs
"hunt": chase
"hind": female deer
metaphor: Wyatt compares a women to a female deer (Ann Boleyn)
Breakdown: Lines 2-3
"But as for me, hélas, I may no more.
The vain travail hath wearied me so sore,"
Wyatt says that has given up hunting the deer
He describes his effort to capture the deer as unproductive and futile
Wyatt does not seek to win back Ann Boleyn anymore; his hunt is over
It has tired him to extremes
"hélas": "Alas" in French
Alliteration: "me," "may," "more;" "so," "sore"
Breakdown: Lines 4-6
"I am of them that farthest cometh behind
Yet may I by no means my wearied mind
Draw from the deer, but as she fleeth afore"
"them": the other hunters of the deer (suitors of Boleyn)
"draw": withdraw
"afore:" before
"Fleeth afore": escaping, running forward
Wyatt is way behind the other hunters
He is one of the farthest hunters from the deer, meaning he is nowhere close to winning Ann Boleyn back
In line 5, he says that he may be losing, but he will never take Boleyn off of his mind
The deer running forward swiftly, means that Boleyn wasn't attracted to any of her suitors
She wanted to remain chaste
Alliteration: "may," "means," "my," "mind"
Breakdown: Lines 7-8
"Fainting I follow. I leave off therefore
Sithens in a net I seek to hold the wind"
"fainting": hopeless
"Sithens": Since
Wyatt is saying his hope to catch the deer is diminishing because she is running farther and farther from him
Wyatt admits that his efforts at this point are completely worthless
line 8 is a proverb--> Wyatt's attempts to reconnect with Boleyn are about as successful as catching the wind with a net
Alliteration: "Fainting," "follow"
Breakdown: Lines 9-10
"Who list her hunt, I put him out of doubt,
As well as I may spend his time in vain"
"Who list her hunt": those who want to hunt the female deer
"Put him out of doubt": the result of their efforts will be futile just like Wyatt's
Wyatt is discouraging other hunters from seeking Ann Boleyn, because she doesn't want them
They are wasting their time and energy just like he did
Alliteration: "her," "hunt"
Breakdown: Lines 11-12
"And graven with diamonds in letters plain
There is written, her fair neck round about"
"graven": engraved, carved
Words are boldly written on stone around her neck
The words can be seen by everyone
Breakdown: Lines 13-14
"Noli me tangere,
for Caesar's I am
And wild for to hold, though I seem tame"
"Noli me tangere" :
Do not touch me
this was engraved on the diamond around Ann Boleyn's neck
She didn't care for any of her suitors, and wanted all of them to stay away from her
"Caesar's": King Henry VIII
She is telling everyone to stay away from her because she was now married to King Henry VIII
Wyatt calls Henry, Caesar because he wants to avoid conflict with the king
"wild": free
"tame": cooperative
Wyatt is saying that Ann Boleyn is a risky person to be in a relationship with, even though it may seem like it could be an effective relationship- She is married to the King
Form
sonnet
lyric poem
fourteen lines
this sonnet format comes from Sicily- Wyatt was influenced while he was in Italy
rhyme scheme: abba abba cbbc bb
iambic pentameter- one line has five pairs of stressed and unstressed syllables
many lines in this poem have extra syllables
iambic pentameter is most notable in lines 2 and 3
Themes
unachievable love: Wyatt and Boleyn will never be together
following authority: Wyatt doesn't pursue love with Boleyn because of her marriage with King Henry VIII
unreachable goal: Wyatt is never able to fulfill his goal of a relationship with Boleyn
Sources
Cummings J., Michael. "Whoso List to Hunt."
Cummings Study Guides
. Michael J. Cummings. No month of publication. 2010. Web. 5 April 2014.
"Whoso List to Hunt, I Know Where is an Hind Analysis."
Elite Skills
. Np. June. 2011. Web. 5 April 2014.
"Whoso List to Hunt, I Know where is an Hind."
Poetry Foundation
. Poetry Foundation. No month of publication. 2014. Web. 5 April 2014.
"Cynosure." "Analysis of Sir Thomas Wyatt's 'Whoso list to hunt.'"
Post Poems
. Np. Sep. 2011. Web. 5 April 2014.
"Thomas Wyatt."
Poetry Foundation
. Poetry Foundation. No month of publication. 2014. Web. 5 April 2014.
"Thomas Wyatt."
Poets
. Academy of American Poets. No month of publication. No year of publication. Web. 5 April 2014.
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