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Compare and contrast marvell s to his coy mistress and donne s the flea

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  • The Flea uses an enormous scale comparing the size of honour to the flea, and the minute act of the two human's blood in a flea being mingled;
  • In To His Coy Mistress Marvell explains that she cannot delay sex because she might die and then any courtship would have been wasted;
  • In the last few lines of this poem, Marvell is making his last ditch effort to nearly beg the mistress to sleep with him;
  • The Flea tries to achieve what it wants it with the use if conceits far-fetched metaphor and paradox;
  • This reiterates the idea that Marvell respects his girlfriend's virginity, rather than Donne's belittling of it.

The two poems are based on the idea of seduction and both express their different views making the poems contrasting to one another. The layout of each poem is definitely significant.

It is structured in three stanzas, each showing constant progression and containing an octosyllabic rhyme scheme of AABB rhyming couplets. These in turn set a fast pace to the poem.

These help the rhythm of the poem to flow more smoothly and expand the meaning along with clarifying his feelings and emotions that he has for his mistress In the second stanza, Marvell continues his story of progression by explaining how he and his mistress do not have all the time in the world. This helps to convince his mistress that coyness is folly and playing games is a waste of time.

In the third stanza, Marvell presents his final argument, reminiscent of a conclusion, where he expresses his thoughts of what they should do.

Andrew Marvell and John Donne Comparison 10/25

A sin, or shame, or loss of maidenhead. He does this by forcefully conveying his argument — that sex is unimportant.

Expert Answers

Donne uses simple and easy language proving that he speaks to the lady on the same level and there is no hierarchy. Furthermore it conveys the flea as being the equivalent of them being married.

  • Marvell sees the mistress on equal terms with himself and as the poem progresses he regards her almost as a goddess;
  • It shows that he does not really have the patience to wait because, presuming they are a young couple, diminishes the strength of his argument as death would not be especially close;
  • In To His Coy Mistress Marvell uses a very exaggerated tone of language where it uses extravagant verbs and metaphors to put across his ideas;
  • The three stanzas of each poem all show progression of feelings and stages of seduction;
  • There is also the idea of growing old and being lonely; something that scares everyone as no one wants to be lonely.

This further suggests he was caring about the flea just to make the woman feel guilty and so is another light-hearted idea from Donne for amusement. The use of imperative makes it stand out and to make the woman take notice. There is undoubtedly progression evident in both poems and their three stanzas which is something that is similar. However, the tone of the poems contrasts.

Myra Seaman | Fall 2012

This is in contrast to the other two poems where no real sentiments are evident. He feels that they should not waste time, and that they should have sex now while they are young and beautiful. This is similar to that of Donne, as he is also of the belief that his mistress should have sex with him now because in his case, a flea has their bloods mingled. In general, the poems are similar because they both detail the theme of seduction. Both have similar tones and moods and are even more similar in the way they are structured.

Can you specify the differences between Marvell's and Donne's metaphysical poetry?

The three stanzas of each poem all show progression of feelings and stages of seduction. Another similarity is that both poets use many poetic techniques such as metaphors, similes and personification.

Marvell uses a variety of poetic techniques such as hyperbolic language unlike the other two poets who use monosyllabic language and simpler sentence structures. My decision is based on the varied language Marvell has used. I feel it is very effective as there is a good and varied use of poetic techniques in conjunction with effective sentence structure. This all combines to make the poem more enjoyable to read and in terms of seduction, a much more effective seduction poem because of it.