We’ll spend a bit more time with Shakespeare’s sonnets before moving on. Adding to the three sonnets you already read (1, 20, and one of your choosing), you should read the rest of the Shakespeare sonnets in the packet and write down three ideas of what kind of relationship Shakespeare is depicting in the sonnets:
  1. Give two examples/quotations from the sonnets that indicate that the speaker has a friendly relationship with the young man in sonnets 1-126.
  2. Give two examples/quotations from the sonnets that indicate that the speaker has a romantic relationship with the young man in sonnets 1-126.
  3. Tell what kind of relationship the speaker has with the Dark Lady in sonnets 127-154, and give two examples/quotations to support your idea.
I’ll ask you to hand these in at the end of class.
You should also listen to the two songs from this playlist, the first with lyrics by Ben Jonson and the second with lyrics by John Donne. The music for both is written by Alfonso Ferrabosco, who wrote the music for Masque of Blackness, and these songs were printed in a collection of Ferrabosco’s songs published in 1609. I’ve included the lyrics to the songs below and kept the original spelling in the Donne song.

“Come, my Celia” from the play Volpone
by Ben Jonson

Come, my Celia, let us prove,
While we can, the sports of love;
Time will not be ours forever;
He at length our good will sever.
Spend not then his gifts in vain.
Suns that set may rise again;
But if once we lose this light,
’Tis with us perpetual night.
Why should we defer our joys?
Fame and rumor are but toys.
Cannot we delude the eyes
Of a few poor household spies,
Or his easier ears beguile,
So removèd by our wile?
’Tis no sin love’s fruit to steal;
But the sweet thefts to reveal,
To be taken, to be seen,
These have crimes accounted been.

 

“So, so leave off, this last lamenting kiss”

by John Donne
So, so, leaue off, this last lamenting kisse,
which sucks two soules and vapours both away,
Turne thou ghost that way, And let me turne this,
and let our selues benight our happy day,
we aske none leaue to loue, nor will we owe
any so cheape a death as saying goe.
Goe, goe, and if that word haue not quite kild thee,
Ease me with death by bidding me goe to:
O, if it haue let my word worke on me,
And a iust office on a murderer doe.
Except it be too late to kill me so,
Being double dead, going and bidding goe.
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