Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day?

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Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? William Shakespeare is one of the greatest poets and writers in the English language of all time. He wrote more than 150 sonnets and over 35 plays in his lifetime. Among all of the sonnets he wrote, “Sonnet 18”, often alternately titled “Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?”, is the most famous. In this sonnet, Shakespeare used different literary devices such as personification, metaphor, imagery, and figurative language to show that the beloved, beautiful woman he compared to a summer’s day will never change and will be forever, even though summer will come to an end and another season will take place. In line one, “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” Shakespeare poses a question and already began to compare his subject to a “summer’s day”. We can see from the text that “summer” is immediately personified with an apostrophe. Shakespeare used the personification here since the subject, the beloved beautiful woman, is a real person. He didn’t want to compare the subject to someone else, instead a lovely summer days is a great thing to compare with. As Shakespeare opened the sonnet with a question, he began to answer the question in line two. “Thou art more lovely and more temperate” (Shakespeare 2). In this line, temperate was used as a synonym and pun. There are two meanings of the word “temperate”. When it was used for his subject, it means “showing moderation or self restraint.” When it is used to describe summer’s day, the word “temperate” means “having a mild temperatures”. Shakespeare used the word “temperate” to show that the beauty of the woman is far more constant than the weather in summer. In line three and line four, “Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, and summer’s lease hath all too short a date” (Shakespeare 3, 4) Shakespeare used the personification along with a metaphor to show the reader
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