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Sonnet 19: Devouring Time, Blunt Thou the Lion's Paws

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Shirlene Chong

on 25 October 2013

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Transcript of Sonnet 19: Devouring Time, Blunt Thou the Lion's Paws

Speaker, Situation
Sonnet 19: Devouring Time, Blunt Thou the Lion's Paws
Speaker: Poet (Shakespeare)

Audience: Direct: Time
Indirect: The world

Tone: Praising -> Demanding -> Acceptance
(1-7) (8-12) (13-14)

Devouring Time, blunt thou the lion's paws,
Time, you make the lion old and weak
And make the earth devour her own sweet brood;
And you make earth take back her children
Pluck the keen teeth from the fierce tiger's jaws,
You take away the tiger's teeth as he ages
And burn the long-lived phoenix in her blood;
You kill the immortal phoenix

Structure, Organization
Quatrain 1- Describing the power of Time.
Quatrain 2- Celebrates the paradox of dying beauty
Quatrain 3- Heinous crime that Time can do
Couplet- the speaker's lover and their love will last forever and young in the poem.

2 shifts that are indicated with conjunctions.
first shift- Things that Time should not do
second shift- Their love will last forever and young

closed punctuation
apostrophe: speaker is talking to time
personification: time is a character that controls many aspects of people's lives
imagery: (animals) lion, tiger, phoenix
metaphor: time is an artist
not with thy hours my love’s fair brow/ nor
no lines there with thine antique pen"
synecdoche: “my love’s fair brow” means the man's whole face

Paraphrase (Continued)
Contemporary English
"Devouring time"- power
"Heinous crime"- exaggerating on the worst crime that can ever be made.
"Fair brow"- symbolic of the aging process happening on the lover's beauty.
"Antique pen"- age

Sound Devices
Alliteration: "long-lived," "sorry seasons," "wide world"
assonance: "keen teeth"
emphasizes the extent of time's power
iambic pentameter
rhyme: abab/cdcd/efef/gg
slant rhyme in bb and gg
Make glad and sorry seasons as thou fleet'st,
As you move, emotions and seasons move too
And do whate'er thou wilt, swift-footed Time,
And do whatever you want, Time
To the wide world and all her fading sweets;
To the entire world and her constitutes
But I forbid thee one most heinous crime:
But Time, there is one thing you cannot do

Paraphrase (cont.)
O! carve not with thy hours my love's fair brow,
Do not age my love in appearance

Nor draw no lines there with thine antique pen;
Do not give him any wrinkles as he ages
Him in thy course untainted do allow
Let him escape from your actions and stay beautiful
For beauty's pattern to succeeding men.
As a model of beauty for future generations
Yet, do thy worst old Time: despite thy wrong,
But even if you do not listen and do age him
My love shall in my verse ever live young.

Through this poem he will stay young and
Time has relentless consequences, primarily that of aging

Poem immortalizes his love

Important lines/phrases
Line 8: But I forbid thee one most heinous crime

Line 9: O! Carve not with thy hours my love’s fair brow

Line 10: Draw no lines there with thine antique pen
Full transcript