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Q. Marvell's Poem "To His Coy Mistress" Is A Poem About Seduction. Discuss The Effects Of The Diction And The Imagery As The Argument Of The Poem Develops

1281 words - 6 pages

"To His Coy Mistress" is primarily the author, Andrew Marvell, trying to convince and seduce "his coy mistress", into having intimate relations with him. The poem has three stanzas; each with a different purpose: the first stanza gently and subtly flatters his mistress, using positive diction and images to show, how Marvell wishes he could love her for all of eternity; the second stanza, however, uses imagery to show how time is moving fast and also, strongly negative diction and images to show how life must be lived happily, for there is no chance to after death; the last stanza, the conclusion of the poem, uses quite sexual images to tell his mistress, that because time is limited, they ...view middle of the document...

Later on in the stanza, he uses diction to create images, to flatter "his mistress." "Thou by the Indian Ganges' side shouldst rubies find; I by the tide of the Humber would complain." The imagery shows how he sees his mistress as exotic, by comparing her to the Indian Ganges', which at that time, was an faraway and exotic place; while, comparing himself with "the Humber", he views himself as ordinary, compared to her. The effect is that it fulfils the author's purpose for it, which was to flatter this lady. The diction also helps him achieve this, "shouldst rubies find"; rubies are precious and beautiful, and by using this diction, he again flatters her, by describing how beautiful and precious she is to him.In the first stanza the author has used diction and imagery effectively to create a relaxed and easy mood and tone, to show how the author wishes he can just slowly and eternally love this woman; a "state" which she "deserves." He also achieves his purpose of gracefully complementing this lady on her beauty, in more ways than physically.In the next stanza, Marvell uses diction and imagery to show how there is nothing to be enjoyed in the eternity of death, and how death is a lonely place, therefore another person's love must be experienced during life. He tells us that "at [his] back [he] always hears Time's wingèd chariot hurrying near." "Winged": this diction gives us an impression that the "chariot" is quick, and therefore the imagery, created by the personification of "Time", shows that time travels quickly; life is short. "Yonder before us lie deserts of vast eternity." I believe the "deserts of vast eternity" metaphorically symbolises death. "Deserts" suggests lifeless, desolate; while "vast eternity" uses long vowels sounds in "vast", combined with the 'e' sound being repeated and carried on at the end, in "eternity". The combined effect of the diction: an image, showing the boring, lifelessness of death. This is summed up at the end of the stanza: "the grave's a fine and private place, but none, I think, do there embrace:" love and its pleasures may only be experience during life. He also tries to convince "his mistress", that keeping her virginity, is a silly thing to do. Marvell refers to "long preserved virginity" as a "quaint honour"; the choice of diction, by using quaint, shows the author's negative tone towards keeping your "virginity": it is too old-fashioned, odd, and somewhat of a...

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