What is Love?

Shakespeare, being the theatrical genius he is, has conjured many concepts of love in his work. From glorifying a women’s beauty to pointing out one’s flaws. Love is a misconception many see differently. Each sonnet Shakespeare has written shows loves in different ways, each perceived differently by his audience. However they are seen, each sonnet is still beautiful.In Sonnet One Hundred and Six, the narrator admires a woman’s beauty. In Sonnet One Hundred and Thirty, the narrator depicts all of a woman’s flaws but still states that the love he has for her is unquestionably true. Sonnet One Hundred and Forty-four depicts a love triangle between the narrator, a male, and a female. The male is seen as an angel, and the female is shown as a devil. Sonnet Twenty-three, the narrator, is seen as a timid actor on a stage, who cannot express his love as the actor cannot recite his lines. In Sonnet One Hundred and Sixteen, love is described as everlasting, or can surpass even Death itself.

In Sonnet One Hundred and Six, the narrator is admiring a woman of unimaginable beauty, along with other men. He compares her to the stories told of knights and damsels. The narrator also compares how others would write stories and poems of her beauty with antique pens. She has mastered beauty, and all of her praise can be seen as prophecies. Everyone looks upon her with divining eyes but do not know what to say. This is one-way beauty can be seen. Something can be so beautiful; it brings awe upon men and is written down in their memories. Sonnet One Hundred and Thirty delves into a more material vision of love. The audience would expect another glorified version of beauty. This takes a much more realistic, deeper meaning to love. Instead of praising a woman’s looks, the narrator actually depicts all of her flaws. Her eyes are not as bright as the sun, her cheeks are not red, her breath stinks, and her voice is not soothing. These are but examples…

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