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Transcript of Sonnet 116
Title Before Reading
The tone of the poem is that of optimism. The speaker is confident and sure that love can endure all obstacles and struggles in life, to the end of time.
Let me not declare any reasons why two
True-minded people should not be married. Love is not love
Which changes when it finds a change in circumstances,
Or bends from its firm stand even when a lover is unfaithful:
Oh no! it is a lighthouse
That sees storms but is never shaken;
Love is the guiding north star to every lost ship,
Whose value cannot be calculated, although its altitude can be measured.
Love is not at the mercy of Time, though physical beauty
Comes within the compass of his sickle.
Love does not alter with hours and weeks,
But, rather, it endures until the last day of life.
If I am proved wrong about these thoughts on love
Then I recant all that I have written, and no man has ever [truly] loved.
The speaker in this sonnet is Shakespeare who is explaining that true love is neither destructible nor has a time limit to it nor is alterable, it is everlasting. We concluded that Shakespeare is saying this because he says "I never writ, nor no man ever loved"
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
"Love is not love, Which alters when it alteration finds..."
This is saying that true love is only real when you do not need to alter it, true love is and stays pure.
"Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, But bears it out even to the edge of doom."
This is saying that love does not change over time but rather prevails until the end of time.
"Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks Within his bending sickle's compass come..."
This is saying that love does not depend on time or fade with time.
" I never writ, nor no man ever loved." (line 14)
"Let me not to the marriage of true minds..." (Line 1)
The use of alliteration is used to help sentences flow easily.
Even though time can be seen as a force of destruction, it does not affect true love because love last forever.
"It is the star to every wandering bark..." (line 7)
The speaker compares love to a guiding star. Love guides humans like stars guide ships.
"It is a ever fixed mark..."(Line 5) The speaker compares love to a lighthouse.
“Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken” (Line 8).
This quote personifies love by referring to it with pronouns like “whose” and “his”.
Love is being personified as a
human rather than an emotion.
"Within his bending sickle’s compass come..." (Line 10)
The speaker gives time characteristics of the the Grim Reaper.
Love is a powerful, unstoppable force of nature that can not be measured by time but is everlasting.
"Which alters when it alteration finds, or bends with the remover to remove:"
Shakespeare uses repetition to emphasize his view point, which is love stays the same, through any difficulties.
After reading the poem, we concluded that this should be the title because the speaker expresses true love as everlasting it is not affected by time, and it does not change even after death.
Sonnet 116 was published in 1609. At the time there were no plays taking place because of the Black Plague, so Shakespeare began writing poems. Shakespeare than was hooked on the form of sonnets.He used it to express his feelings at that moment and every purpose imaginable.