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Ralegh’s “The Nymph’s Reply to the Shepherd” and Marlowe’s “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” Essay

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Updated: Jun 7th, 2021

Introduction

Poetry is an essential part of world literature because it allows writers to express their thoughts in the most sophisticated manner. Usually, every literary work is independent and isolated from others. However, some poems can be connected, and it sometimes involves the creations of different authors. For example, it relates to Ralegh’s “The Nymph’s Reply to the Shepherd,” which is a response to Marlowe’s “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love.” Thus, the analysis of these two poems shows that they feature both similar and different themes, the same imagery items with various implications, and almost identical diction.

Analysis of the Poems

It is reasonable to begin the comparison of these works with the themes discussed. On the one hand, the topic of love is present in both of them. It becomes clear after reading the first lines of the poems. In addition to that, the lyrics draw attention to nature and its beauty, while Ralegh also focuses on the temporality of the world. On the other hand, these literary works cover different topics. As for “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love,” a theme of persuasion penetrates the whole poem. The hero tries to convince his lover to come to him by describing possible advantages that will arise if it happens. For example, he promises to make “beds of Roses, and a thousand fragrant posies” (Marlowe). In turn, Ralegh’s work is unique because it refers to issues of immortality and the stream of time. The line “if all the world and love were young” represents the Nymph’s thoughts concerning these topics (Ralegh). The information above proves that the two poems are based on the same central concepts, but it does not prevent each of them from revealing peculiar thoughts.

The imagery represents the second phenomenon to be analyzed in the poems. As soon as the two literary works are closely connected, it is not a surprise that they introduce an almost identical set of images. For example, it refers to the lovers, and numerous elements of nature, including rocks, rivers, roses, and others. At the same time, these images convey different meanings in the two works. Thus, Marlowe uses them to show the beauty of the countryside, while Ralegh describes these items to express a thought of temporality. Even though these literary works refer to the same images, they are discovered from opposite points of view.

Finally, it is necessary to pay attention to the diction of the poems. In this case, it is difficult to emphasize any distinct peculiarities one verse has against the other. It seems that both writers used the identical set of language means with only slight variations. Both of them have examples of obsolete words, including thy and thee. As for modern words, there are many touchpoints between the poems, which refers to all those means used to reveal the themes and images above. Thus, the pieces of literature under analysis are similar, considering their diction.

Conclusion

Marlowe’s “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” is in close connection with Ralegh’s “The Nymph’s Reply to the Shepherd” because the latter is a response to the first poem. It explains the fact that the two verses feature the same themes, imagery, and diction. However, each of these poems implies its peculiar issues, while identical images convey various messages, which makes them unique and outstanding pieces of world literature.

Works Cited

Marlowe, Christopher. Poetry Foundation, 2019, Web.

Ralegh, Sir Walter. Poetry Foundation, 2019, Web.

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IvyPanda. (2021, June 7). Ralegh's "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" and Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love". Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/raleghs-the-nymphs-reply-to-the-shepherd-and-marlowes-the-passionate-shepherd-to-his-love/

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"Ralegh's "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" and Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love"." IvyPanda, 7 June 2021, ivypanda.com/essays/raleghs-the-nymphs-reply-to-the-shepherd-and-marlowes-the-passionate-shepherd-to-his-love/.

1. IvyPanda. "Ralegh's "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" and Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love"." June 7, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/raleghs-the-nymphs-reply-to-the-shepherd-and-marlowes-the-passionate-shepherd-to-his-love/.


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IvyPanda. "Ralegh's "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" and Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love"." June 7, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/raleghs-the-nymphs-reply-to-the-shepherd-and-marlowes-the-passionate-shepherd-to-his-love/.

References

IvyPanda. 2021. "Ralegh's "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" and Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love"." June 7, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/raleghs-the-nymphs-reply-to-the-shepherd-and-marlowes-the-passionate-shepherd-to-his-love/.

References

IvyPanda. (2021) 'Ralegh's "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd" and Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love"'. 7 June.

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