To His Coy Mistress

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The speaker in Andrew Marvell’s “To His Coy Mistress” is a man who is addressing a silent listener, who happens to be his mistress. In this dramatic monologue the speaker tries to explain his feelings to his mistress. The speaker uses many allusions to empires and other objects, events and ideas that are not directly related to his feelings, in order to explain how he feels. He uses these allusions to exaggerate his feelings in order to clearly show them. After reading over the poem once, you get a sense of what the speaker is feeling. Upon further analysis of the poem you realize that the allusions used in the poem, are in fact, what makes this poem so interesting. The speaker begins the poem by explaining to his mistress that if they had the time and place to discuss there feelings, then it would be no crime to complain and the modesty and reluctance among them would also be ok. However because the situation does not permit them to have such a discussion, he attempts to explain how he feels, in a poem. He begins his explanation by saying “I would love you ten years before the flood” which to me means that he would love her from the beginning of time. He then continues by saying, “and you should if you please refuse, till the conversion of the Jews”. If the reader has any knowledge of the strength of the belief of Jewish people in their faith, then the reader would get the idea that the speaker meant to say that he will lover till the end of time, even if she was to refuse his love. Next, the speaker compares his growing love for her to the expansion of great empires. In lines 11 and 12 the speaker says, “and my vegetables love should grow, vaster than empires and more slow.” Once again the speaker is alluding to something not directly related to love. Yet this comparison has great meaning when you consider the size and rate of growth of empires and also the fact that love is something that...
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