Skip to content

Web Wednesday: Annotating Shakespeare [10/19]

Prewriting: List the steps of New Criticism in five of your own words: “look, look up, structures, unity” 
(I’ll also use this for attendance).

1) Literary Studies Part I:  Read Shakespeare’s Sonnet 65. Let’s use the first part of the New Critical method to analyze it: “Examine the text’s diction.” In comments, write a brief description of the denotation and connotation of three words in the poem.

Since brass, nor stone, nor earth, nor boundless sea,
But sad mortality o’ersways their power,
How with this rage shall beauty hold a plea,
Whose action is no stronger than a flower ?
O how shall summer’s honey breath hold out,
Against the wrackful siege of batt’ring days,
When rocks impregnable are not so stout,
Nor gates of steel so strong but time decays ?
O fearful meditation, where alack,
Shall Time’s best jewel from Time’s chest lie hid?
Or what strong hand can hold his swift foot back,
Or who his spoil of beauty can forbid?
O none, unless this miracle have might,
That in black ink my love may still shine bright.

2) Literary Studies Part II:  Let’s skip to step 4 of the New Critical method: “Examine and analyze the various structural patterns that appear.” In comments, note three structural patterns that are relevant (hint from the reading last time: “note how the poet manipulates metrical devices, grammatical constructions, tonal patterns, and syntactic patterns of words, phrases, clauses, or sentences”).

3) Hybrid Part:  Learn how to do a hover annotation, where additional text will appear when your cursor hovers over certain words. We will use this technology to annotate our poem. To do this in your own posts, you need to switch back and forth between the “visual” and “html” tabs. You can use the following html code to make a hover annotation, but you have to do so when you’re in “html” mode, otherwise you’ll just see the code!

The code pasted in Visual tab:

<a title=”the text that hovers goes here”>the word or phrase to be hovered goes here</a>

The code pasted in HTML tab:

the word or phrase to be hovered goes here

Select one line from Sonnet 65 and make a post on your own blog that demonstrates that you know how to make certain words or phrases “hover-able.” For more help, see:

Screenshot of Visual/HTML tabs (in upper right corner):

4) Writing Part: While you were doing the last part, I hover-annotated the Shakespeare sonnet based on your responses. Go back to the top and take a look! Use this research and post a substantial comment below offering a reading of Shakespeare’s sonnet from the point of view of New Criticism. Write for about 10-12 minutes, and then post. Begin your comment with the phrase “Since a New Critic would not look at _________________, it is important that we begin with ________________.” You may also make note of the fact that we only did the first steps very quickly, and so you should suggest what other things the New Critic would do to improve this reading.

5) Homework: 1) Figure the hover thing out. 2) Look at this site, which offers an interpretation of Sonnet 65: Edit the blog post you made in step 3 (on hover annotations) and discuss what parts of this interpretation a New Critic would be pleased by, and which parts he or she would disagree with.

Here’s what (part of) the HTML looks like for the hover annotation of the Shakespeare sonnet:

Posted in Web Wednesday.

68 Responses

Stay in touch with the conversation, subscribe to the RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. mikadroz says

    Read, dissect, analyze, examine, relate.

  2. egallone24 says

    See, literary recognition, relate, interpret

  3. clo120 says

    See, research, study, examine, understand

  4. seslami says

    Interpret, convert, scrutinize, examine, communicate

  5. Jessica Danielle Powell says

    read, examine, analyze, apply, understand.

  6. P O says

    Understand; analyze relationships; notice patterns; see tension; feel effect.

  7. jtrezza says

    read, re-read, break-up, analyze, reassociate

  8. morgan92 says

    Read,Analyze,Break down,Define,Construe

  9. mikadroz says

    1.) Breath
    Denotation: The inhalation or exhalation of air.
    Connotation: A summer’s breeze.

    2.) Shine
    Denotation: To give out a bright light.
    Connotation: To be clear/obvious.

    3.) Boundless
    Denotation: Without boundaries.
    Connotation: Extremely large.

  10. khiralal says

    Examine, identify, Organize, Di-sect, and conclude.

  11. clo120 says

    Flower: A plant that has petals of various colors, and usually a fragrance. Since they are fragile, Shakespeare is using the word to imply a lack of strength.

    Bright: Luminous. Light attracts attention, and is noticeable, so Shakespeare wants love to remain forever seen, and not to be lost in darkness of death.

    Decays: To break down. Shakespeare is showing the destructive and ravaging power of time, discussing how the passage of time is unstoppable.

  12. jtrezza says

    “Breath” – Denotation – the air that comes from a person’s mouth upon exhaling; the smell of that air.
    Connotation – the temperature; the nature of the climate, air, breeze.

    “Honey” – Denotation – gooey, sugary substance created by bees and harvested by humans as a tasty treat.
    Connotation – sweet, pleasant.

    “Black ink” – Denotation – substance excreted from a writing utensil, probably a pen, that exhibits traits of the color black.
    Connotation – dead spirit; a soul that has passed or has become evil.

  13. sasha says

    1. Flower
    Denotation: A flower is a plant structure.
    Connotation: In the poem, it represents something weak and delicate.

    2. Honey
    Denotation: A kind of syrup(?) that bees produce.
    Connotation: Sweet

    3. Spoil
    Denotation: To rot.
    Connotation: The end.

  14. mchan says

    Black- as used in the poem black in the denotative sense means the color or shade. Black is the darkest shade and often the color of ink. In the connotative sense, the word black can also mean permanent. Because black is the darkest of shades, it is also one of the boldest when contrasted with a lighter writing background and can also signify permanence and a definite or unwavering quality.

    Time – in the denotative sense, time can mean the concept of measuring duration. In the connotative sense, the poem can reference an entity. Time as used in the poem is capitalized and can be reference to “Father Time.”

    Jewel- the denotation of jewel is a beautiful and often valuable gem. The connotative meaning of jewel could be a treasure or perhaps a secret that is highly valuable. It does not need to necessarily be a gem or stone.

  15. seslami says

    1)Denotation of “flower”- a seed bearing plant with a stem
    Connotation of “flower”- pleasure, beauty, delicate.

    2)Denotation of “black”- a color opposite of white.
    Connotation of “black”- mourning, death, no light.

    3)Denotation of “spoil”- when the value of something is ruined or destroyed, it’s spoiled.
    Connotation of “spoil”- to give too much praise, or materialistic material to one.

  16. eldisakaeko88 says

    skim, read, interpret, analyze, understand.

  17. lindsayc says

    Denotation- To become decomposed
    Connotation- Decaying can represent the loss absence or ending of something.

    Denotation- A cut and polished precious stone
    Connotation- A jewel can represent something that mat not even be jewelry at all, but hold significant sentimental value to someone

    Denotation- to give forth glow with light
    Connotation-To say something shines can also mean that it is of great presence

  18. egallone24 says

    In the fourth line of this poem, “Whose action is no stronger then a flower”, the word “stronger” has a different use then normal. Strong’s denotation is exerting great bodily muscular power. However, in this case, “stronger” is being related to an action committed by beauty. That shows that stronger has a different connotation.

    The denotation of the word honey is a sweet thick fluid produced by bees from nectar. However, in this poem, honey is used as a description to the summer’s breath. That is its connotation in this case.

    Finally, “shine bright” in the final line has a connotation as a level of love. However, its denotation is referred to light and shades.

  19. APMimz says

    Structure, Understand, Break down, Compare, Decide

    D: the state or condition of being subject to death; mortal character, nature, or existence.
    C: human, eventual end, flawed

    D: the act or process of surrounding and attacking a fortified place in such a way as to isolate it from help and supplies, for the purpose of lessening the resistance of the defenders and thereby making capture possible.
    C: overcome, weakened, panic

    D: to become decomposed; rot: to decline in excellence, prosperity, health
    C: stinky, withering, over time, disgusting, unimportant

  20. xiomara capera says

    Stronger: D) Having immense physical power C) Able to sustain many emotional hardships

    Black: D)Lacking in color or brightness C) Have evil qualities

    Jewel: D) a precious stone molded to one’s desire C) Someone highly adored, pretty, and valuable

  21. Jessica Danielle Powell says

    D: Death in large numbers
    C: A Power stronger than anything else.
    D: Rotting Away or decomposing.
    C: Loss of strength or effectiveness.
    D: Measured period in life
    C: Something that has the ability to hide and hold beauty

  22. morgan92 says

    D-The blossom of a plant.
    C-Weakness and a lack of strength
    D-To become decomposed.
    C-The passage of time and how it is continuous and never slows down.
    D-A box, usually with a lid, for storage.
    C-The time that has past and the memories that are stored inside.

  23. jkauffman says

    Connotation: an end
    Denotation: death
    Connotation: not allow
    Denotation: prohibited
    Connotation: power
    Denotation: strength

  24. andycrazn says

    Hand: D: The end part of a person’s arm beyond the wrist, including the palm, fingers, and thumb.
    C: could be a clocks hand referring to time.
    honey: D: A sweet, sticky, yellowish-brown fluid made by bees and other insects from nectar collected from flowers.
    C: something sweet or valuable.
    flower: D:
    The seed-bearing part of a plant, consisting of reproductive organs (stamens and carpels) that are typically surrounded by a brightly.
    C: somethings weak or delicate.

  25. eldisakaeko88 says


    Black- lacking hue and brightness
    Spoil- to diminish or impair the quality
    Jewel-a cut and polished precious stone


    Black- death, mourning, griefing, funeral, beautiful.
    Spoil- One who is the only child might be spoiled. On the flipside, one’s style can be spoiled.
    Jewel- A jewel holds a certain value that is valued by society or can be a judgement of a persons appearence. “shes a jewel worth fighting for, a diamond one invisions and can’t ignore.”

  26. khiralal says

    Brass: Denotation – An alloy of Copper and Zinc
    Connotation – An instrument, Tv series, or board game

    Jewel: Denotation – A type of stone, crystal
    Connotation – Something of great value to another person

    Bright: Denotation – To illuminate
    Connotation – T be smart

  27. femi says

    define, reference, speculate, analyze, compare

  28. seslami says

    1) The rhyming scheme of the poem is : A,B, A, B until the last two lines which is C,C
    2) The theme is about love and time.
    3) Almost half the sonnet is in question form

  29. lindsayc says

    In this sonnet, Shakespeare uses repetition of questions, in lines 4, 8, 10 and 12. He also uses a rhyme pattern of A, B, A, B, C, D, C, D, etc. And the whole thing is basically a metaphor.

  30. mikadroz says

    1.) The final word in the first and third lines rhyme, as do the final words in the second and fourth line. This structure in these first four lines occur three times, until the last words in the final two lines rhyme with each other.

    2.) Nearly every statement in the poem is a question (which is answered with the final two lines).

    3.) Relating to the above observation, there is some tonal manipulation. Because there are quite a few questions in the poem, at the end of each one (which divides the poem into several sections) the reader’s voice rises slightly, dividing these sections even more obviously.

  31. P O says

    1) meditation- Denotation: The act of self-reflecting and contemplation.
    Connotation: relaxing, peaceful time for deep thinking.

    2) Jewel- Denotation: a crystal or cut stone that is expensive and often used for accessories.
    Connotation: Precious, beautiful rocks that are often family heirlooms and gifts for those you love.

    3) black- Denotation: dark color that can block out all other colors.
    Connotation: black is a dull, boring color that is being used in this poem to express his bright love.

  32. jkauffman says

    1) There are many words within the poem that have a pattern of something that is great or extraordinary such as boundless, power, impregnable, and might.
    2) There are also many words that have to do with something that is upsetting such as mortality, rage, siege, sad, and fear.
    3) There are also patterns of shortening words to make them be able to rhyme such as o’ersways and batt’ring.

  33. mchan says

    Literary Studies Part 2)

    Shakespeare’s line length are roughly the same and alternate in 10 and 12 syllables each.

    Shakespeare also uses rhetorical questions in 4 instances in the poem

    The tone of Shakespeare’s sonnet is both questioning and has a slight sense of desperation and sadness because of the use of “O” and the bleak imagery, (i.e: O how shall summer’s honey breath hold out?, How with this rage shall beauty hold a plea)

  34. Jerry says

    DENOTATION: The stone (abbreviation st[1]) is a unit of mass from the imperial system of measurement currently taken as being equal to 14 avoirdupois pounds.

    CONNATION : A real heavy object.

    DENOTATION : Honey (English pronunciation: /ˈhʌni/) is a sweet food made by bees using nectar from flowers.

    CONNOTATION : Something real sweet and soothing.

    DENOTATION : to damage severely or harm (something).
    CONNOTATION : Plentfully of or rich amount of.

  35. egallone24 says

    One structural pattern is how every one or two lines, Shakespeare asks a question. Every other line end with a rhyming word, except the final two lines. The pattern goes from A,B,A,B to C,C at the end. He also uses gives many things in this poem unrealistic qualities. For an example, “summer’s honey breath” or “beauty hold a plea”

  36. APMimz says

    The format is done in the typical Sonnet ABAB CDCD EFEF GG
    The tone is forlorn, singing a song to describe what the person is going through with words of what it wanted
    In the stanza’s following the first, the author uses “O” in the first line, Line 5, 9, 13

  37. andycrazn says

    the sonnet has 4 questions and answers it with the last sentence. the whole thing is a metaphor for love and time and how the words give it life and can withstand time. the rhyme pattern is A,B,A,B, etc until at the end when he sort of answers the questions.

  38. sasha says

    Shakespeare uses apostrophe to structure the sonnet. It begins several new lines, and addresses the next topic he wants to talk about. For examples, in the line “O how shall summer’s honey breath hold out,” and the line, “O fearful meditation, where alack.” Also, there are many lines that are questions. Since the poem is a sonnet, the rhyme scheme is A B A B, and then it ends with a couplet.

  39. femi says

    denotation: to engage in mental exercise (as concentration on one’s breathing or repetition of a mantra) for the purpose of reaching a heightened level of spiritual awareness
    connotation: unity, oneness, peace, spiritual power, deep connection with God.
    denotation: 1)to diminish or destroy the value or quality of. 2)Goods stolen or taken forcibly.
    connotation: rotten, curdle, brat
    denotation: the state of being subject to death.
    connotation: death, human life

  40. xiomara capera says

    -In the first eight lines, a sentence is 4 lines long, however, in the last six lines, the sentences are shorter, more concise.

    -Questions are how, how, where, what and who- interrogative possibly.

    -Lack of conjunctions used in the first two lines

  41. morgan92 says

    Shakespeare puts the whole sonnet into questions, except for the last sentence which is the last two lines. He also put the sonnet which follow A,B,A,B and goes to C,C at the end. The tonal pattern is very bitter and is also filled with sadness

    • morgan92 says

      Shakespeare puts the whole sonnet into questions, except for the last sentence which is the last two lines. He also put the sonnet into a rhyme which follow A,B,A,B and goes to C,C at the end. The tonal pattern is very bitter and is also filled with sadness.

  42. Jessica Danielle Powell says

    Syntactic Patterns
    There is a repitiion of words in the first line where he repeats “nor”. There is also a repetition of “O” and it’s sound in lines 5, 9, 11,12, 13
    There’s a carrying over of the “ea” sound which creates something like a rhyme in the first two lines using the words sea and mortality. Here the author is manipulating rhyme by using assonance.

    Tonal Patterns
    There is underlying hopeful tone to this whole story despite the fact that the author mentions many things that prove that he shouldn’t have any hope. It’s like pilling a lot of negative on a large positive. The first four lines lead into a question, while the next four lines do the same. Then two lines, and then the second to last two lines ask questions while the authors hope is at the end of the poem, proposing an answer. The asking of questions throughout the poem give it a tone of uncertainty but the statement at the end attempts to provide an answer to the questions before it.

  43. eldisakaeko88 says

    I noticed that the last word in the begining sentence ryhmes with not the next sentence but the sentence after. The formations sounds like words of a preacher or a religious person or one who would question god, “Against the wrackful siege of batt’ring days,
    When rocks impregnable are not so stout,
    Nor gates of steel so strong but time decays?”. It’s like statements are being mad but then questioned at the same time, I found it to be very mind boggling because it’s like being hypercritical.

    • eldisakaeko88 says

      sonnet formated AB AB CD CD etc…. and the stamements are then being questioned.

  44. jtrezza says

    1. Shakespeare keeps his allusions consistent; everything he references in this piece has to do with the natural world. Even giving many of these objects human qualities.
    2. His constant use of questions gives the poem a tone appropriate with a desperate speaker. This feeling of longing and unfound answers is constructed from lines 1 to 14.
    3. The rhyme sceme, while inconsistent, is present enough to determine some sort of structure. It never holds true for more than four lines, and when it reaches this limit there is a break and a new scheme begins with the next line.

  45. P O says

    1) The poem opens with examples of strong, concrete objects that are typically viewed as things that will last forever. He then says that these things won’t withstand mortality, which throws you off a little because people often view the ocean and rocks as things that will last forever.

    2) All of the questions are about how these beautiful, great things on earth will withstand the end of time.

    3) He answers the questions, saying that nothing will withstand time, unless the miracle of his poem allows his love to shine on forever.

  46. khiralal says

    1) Every other lines rhymes through every four lines.
    2) The author only capitalizes one other words other than the beginning of each sentence. He uses the word Time.
    3) The author uses questions to ask that pertain to beauty

  47. Jerry says

    Since a New Critic would not look at _____emotions ____________, it is important that we begin with ______content__________.”

  48. mikadroz says

    Since a New Critic would not look at historical context it is important that we begin by making sure we understand the vocabulary of the poem. Many definitions change over the years, and it’s essential that we are interpreting each word correctly. For example, today we might interpret ‘brass’ as referring to a television series or board game, but it’s clear from the context that Shakespeare is referring to the various elements when he goes on to mention stone, earth, and sea.
    There are quite a few symbols in this poem– a flower refers to both beauty and weakness, while ‘black ink’ refers to the act of writing down one’s thoughts. By analyzing both this and the vocabulary it becomes clear that this is a poem about love and the fact that all men are mortal. This provides us with tension, which is resolved in the final two lines when the speaker suggests that the only way to make his love immortal would be to write about it.

  49. mchan says

    Since a New Critic would not look at the biographical background of the author, it is important that we begin with diction to analyze the poem. A lot of the poem’s meaning can be found in the word choice (diction), in the structure and form of the poem, and in how the poet arranges the poem. In our class exercise, we were constrained with a schedule we had to follow in analyzing the poem with the New Criticism techniques, but a New Critic would benefit in spending more time analyzing all the words of the poem and referencing a dictionary to fully access all the different meanings the poet may have had in choosing one word over another.
    The line structure, rhythm, meter, and grammar can also greatly affect the poem and its meaning so it is also important to take a deeper look into those areas of the poem to see what it means used in that context, how it changes the poem (i.e. the quick staccato rhythm gives the poem a feeling of tenseness) and its meaning.

    The hover definitions are very useful for the reader and it offers both the connotative and denotative reading of the poem for the the reader. This gives Shakespeare’s sonnet so many possibilities for what it means, purely based on the poem itself and the meanings of the words. The ambiguity of the words really allows this poem to be interpreted in many different ways containing a variety of different explanations.

  50. femi says

    Literary Studies Part II
    1) I may be stating the obvious here but the poem is a sonnet. The characteristic of a sonnet is to have 14 lines which this poem does.
    2) The rhyme scheme is also interesting. The last two line were a couplet, however majority of the poem followed the pattern A,B,A,B, C,D,C,D,E,F,E,F.
    3) This poem also uses personification often. In this line “Shall Time’s best jewel from Time’s chest lie hid?”, the author is giving
    time an inhumane thing the human like trait owning a jewel and have a chest.

  51. Jessica Danielle Powell says

    Since a new Critic would not look at how the poem affects the reader or the author mentally it’s important that we begin with detaching our emotions from the text. A New Critic would read this sonnet strictly for the text, but what confuses me is don’t you have to invoke an emotional response to make logical connections between words and sentences? A new critic goes through a tremendous amount of examining text, analyzing symbols, motifs etc., interpreting, and eventually application. To improve the quality of this reading you may want to take your time…you won’t be a perfect New Critic if you haven’t dedicated your life to the craft. This can’t be mastered overnight but can fulfill the requirements pretty well if you take your time reading the poem and examining it. The hovering tool may also be very useful once you’ve manually examined and analyzed the poem to consolidate everything…New Critics like to black and white heart of the text.

  52. andycrazn says

    Since a New Critic would not look at just one line, it is important that we begin with the texts or keywords in the sonnet. We can use the keywords in the sonnet and try to analyze it from a connotative and denotative view. Then we can use the one that best fits the whole sonnet and interpret it. Like if we only just focus on one line like this “Or what strong hand can hold his swift foot back” we would most likely look at this from a denotative perspective and how the hand can physically hold the foot back. but if you look at the entire sonnet for what it is, you would know that the whole thing cant be looked in that perspective since everything is a metaphor, it has to be looked in a connotative way.

  53. jkauffman says

    Since a New Critic would not look at “feelings,” it is important that we begin with “the text.”

  54. egallone24 says

    Since a new critic would not look at the emotions of the author as well as his own its important we begin by not regarding anybodies feelings when interpreting the poem. As a new critic, you first step would be to read the text as is. The words are there and used in that order for a specific reason. Recognizing the time period and the culture from which this piece of literature comes from is also important. Back in Shakespeare’s day, certain words have different connotations then they do presently. This has a huge impact on meaning of the poem. You take the words as is and make a straight forward interpretation of the poem.

  55. lindsayc says

    Since a New Critic would not look at any one part of the poem as its own entity, it is important that we begin with form and content to discover the organic unity of a poem. The goal of a new critic is to determine one “right” interpretation of a poem. Therefore, the interrelationships that form around the central thesis of the poem along with the tension needs to be revealed to get that “right” answer.

  56. morgan92 says

    “Since a New Critic would not look at historical background, it is important that we begin with knowledge of when the text was written.” Over the course of time meanings and words have changed and the way people referred to certain ideas could have come out of context. The way in which the text was originally intended to be understood and meant could possibly be altered and interpreted very differently from the way we see it today. A major flaw that goes along with this is the intentional fallacy. This allows the Critic to ignore the real intent of what the author wanted to say and have it based off of what it means now or the idea in which it portrays. A prime example of this would be with the idea and word “Gay.” Early on the word gay meant happy and people used it as an emotional behavior. Today it is used to describe homosexual behavior. It would be beneficial if Critics would consider examining the historical time frame of when the pieces of writing were created so they would understand as to how the writing was supposed to be read.

  57. xiomara capera says

    Since a new critic would not look at the author, his/her intentions, or historical background, we must analyze this sonnet as if the writer’s identity was unknown. It is important that we begin by getting all possible meanings for each word. We should look at the structure of the sonnet and the author’s apparent use of metaphor’s to affiliate the sections of the poem in order for it to make sense. Also, the poem’s abundance of earthly terms such as stone, earth,flower, honey, rocks, and jewel could be cause for further analysis.

  58. P O says

    Since a New Critic would not look at anything outside of the text, it is important that we begin with what is in the text, including form, choice of language, and relationships throughout the poem. Before you can really interpret the poem though, it is key to make sure you understand all the words in the poem. Once the language is understand, a new critic would take notice of paradoxes and tension throughout the poem. In this poem, there is a lot of tension in the questions that are asked about how these seemingly immortal things will withstand time. The tension is resolved, though, in the last two lines when Shakespeare answers the questions. He says that no one can forbid the spoil of beauty unless the miracle of his poem in black ink, could carry on his love forever. This answer resolves the tension by letting you know that some things do withstand time. This answer is sort of a paradox to his whole poem though because it’s literally black ink on paper that’s carrying on his immortal love.

  59. jtrezza says

    Since a New Critic would not look at the effect the poem may have on the author or the reader, it’s important that we begin by focusing strictly on the text and not on the emotion it brings out in us.
    Our first step would be the read the work, slowly, line by line, and then read it again. Analyzation comes next, looking at specific words and determining why they are used in that position or order specifically.
    Why “meditation” in line 9? Why not “pondering”? Who cares about the capitalization of “Time” in like 10, lets look into why the word is there in the first place, and why it is repeated. Notice how so many of the words used are allusions to the natural world – why is this and what does it do for the piece?
    Since New Critisism is a tediously and meticulous process, the time allotted in class did not do the technique the proper justice. One needs to really pick at the diction and the language of a piece, hold it under the most powerful of microscopes, and then shake for any loose change to be considered a New Critic. Metaphorically speaking, these actions would describe analyzing line structure, rythm, meter, grammar amongst other aspects of the work itself (I know, it’s a great metaphor when you have to explain it in the next line). While we had time to glance upon these areas, I wouldn’t say Web Wednesday allowed us to explore them as deeply as we could have.

  60. Henna says

    see, discuss, search, identify, re-identify, bridge

  61. Henna says

    Flower =
    D: the petaled structure at the head of a stem — rooted or non — composed of a variety of colors or a single color often used for its aesthetic, decorative value, and also as a food source for both animals and humans.
    C: a limp, supple structure that would fail beneath even the slightest degree of pressure

    Rocks =
    D: a solid mass of combined minerals and/or sediments that form over periods of time
    C: even this immortal unit will falter at the presence of said “battering days”

    Foot =
    D: the anatomical structure located at the end(s) of the leg(s) of most animals and humans, used as a weight-bearing platform and as means of movement
    C: a metaphysical presence responsible for the rapid advancement of time

  62. Henna says

    1. The above 14-line sonnet maintains the A-B-A-B C-D-C-D E-F-E-F G-G rhyme scheme found in Shakespearean sonnets composed of three quatrains of alternating line-rhymes followed by a rhyming couplet.

    2. The adjacency in line 11 of “hand” and “foot” suggests a physical brawl between the two anatomical structures, where strong Hand often grasps Foot at the ankle tripping him postponed.

    3. The author progresses throughout his poem with a questioning voice of wonder, assigning physical embodiments to symbolize the ambiguous immortality of beauty up until his firm voice of reason in the closing statement.

  63. Henna says

    Since a New Critic would not look at the author’s feelings, attitudes, values, and beliefs it is important that we begin with the observable objective feelings and attitudes present in the text itself based on that exhibited by its tonal structure, metrical devices, syntactic patterns of words, etc. He/she might perform his/her analysis by viewing the text as not mere black dotting a backdrop of white, but as a slew of words, each brandishing a profound connotative embodiment, interrelated to produce the blanket development amassed by their juxtaposition, figures of speech, tones, symbolic representations, etc. The self-determined bridged result of seemingly independent clauses is fundamental to the New Critic’s analysis, and dependent on the identification and location of rhetorical devices.

  64. femi says

    Since a New Critic would not look at the author’s intention or emotion, it is important that we begin with actual text and its vocabulary choice. After re-reading Sonnet 65, I found the first two lines to describe the power of the narrator to be stronger than any earthly component. Rather it be the earth itself or in it parts of stones, metals, or large bodies of water. However, the narrator realizes that his power is compromised should his life be ended. In lines 1 and 2 these thoughts are displayed when the author gives personification to mortality overpowering stone, brass, earth, and boundless sea. I think the narrator alludes to the natural world to amplify the magnitude of his main idea.

    In lines 3 through 7, the narrator asks the reader to consider the position beauty may have against mortality, Especially when beauty is characterized to have the bodily strength of flower, a docile thing that is cultivated mainly for its aesthetic value. He continues with the metaphor of beauty being summer’s breath incapable to with stand a gnawing that questions God for long days, especially as it grows weaker with each day.

    Line 9 expresses that the thought of all the stresses that beauty is facing is saddening because its future looks grim in the war against mortality. The entire poem present the conflict between beauty and mortality because it is understood that as time increases, beauty fades. Lines 10 through 12 express that no one’s beauty can escape the ravage of time. Lines 13 and 14 express that the only way beauty can escape time is if this miracle occurs, “that in black ink my love may still shine bright”, which means that even in death the narrator’s love must be obvious. These last two lines resolve the conflict between beauty and mortality. Beauty and mortality where understood to have the relationship that the two could not co-exist. However the narrator said it to be possible if a miracle comes true that his love and beauty continues live despite his physical death.

Continuing the Discussion

  1. Digital Literary Analysis | Different Assignment? linked to this post on October 12, 2014

    […] Below is a sample of the annotated assignment, and here is a link to a post from another class where I showed them how to do this: […]

You must be logged in to post a comment.