Compare Shakespeare’s Sonnet 130 and Spencer’s Ye Tradefull Merchants



 

Tradefull Merchants is actually Sonnet XV in Spenser‘s Amoretti and is the base for Shakespeare‘s Sonnet 130. Both poets declare love for their mistresses, however there‘s a difference: Spenser‘s sonnet represents the conventional approach of glorifying the woman he loves, describing her as extremely beautiful and so on; Shakespeare takes the opposite approach: In Sonnet 130, he uses anti-hyperbolical figures of speech — this sonnet is addressed to the Dark Lady who isn‘t the most beautiful lady in the world, but is beautiful enough for him and he loves her. Sonnet 130 is a parody of the conventional love poetry.

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