Sonnet 43: How Do I Love Thee By Elizabeth Barrett Browning

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Sonnet 43, also known as "How Do I Love Thee" is a literary classic written by Elizabeth Barrett Browning in 1850. This poem follows a Petrarch sonnet structure, even though she lived closer to Shakespear's time. This poem explores all the ways the author loves someone, it even goes through almost all stages of life. Her love is talked about on an everyday level, as well as on a spiritual level. Her love, she says, will even continue on after death. This sonnet uses a wide range of figurative devices as well as a strong rhyming pattern to sweetly convey a theme that is still relevant today.

In Sonnet 43 question is asked in the first line and the rest of the poem thoughtfully answers. The opening line states "How do I love thee?", and then repeats the phrase "I love thee" throughout the poem to answer the question. Lines 2,5,7,8,9, and 11 all open with the same phrase to state that
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This poem features iambic pentameter, an "ABBA" pattern throughout lines 1-8, and a "CD" pattern in lines 9-14.The first octave, or 8 lines, hold a different pattern from the ending sestet, or last 6 lines. The octave also presents the theme of the poem; the sestet offers a solution to the question posed in line 1. Sonnet 43 also features internal rhyming in line 2. The random internal rhyming in line 2 catches interest while the continuous rhyming pattern makes the whole poem sound smooth and lovely. I feel the rhyming and traditional "poem feeling" helps convey the loving, sweet, cute nature of her affection. It has a smooth sound, which also helps it hold a romantic tone throughout the whole work. Sonnet 43 might be short, but it holds so much emotion and conveys so much affection that it has a lasting impression. Although many other poems also have this pattern, Sonnet 43 remains a classic. The ingenious use of many literary devices makes this poem stand out, as well as stand the test of

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