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Can someone tell me the figures of speech (with the line numbers) in Sonnet 43 by...

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aleksandra8 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 15, 2011 at 1:29 AM via web

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Can someone tell me the figures of speech (with the line numbers) in Sonnet 43 by Shakespeare?

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted December 17, 2011 at 6:47 AM (Answer #1)

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William Shakespeare, in Sonnet 43, uses multiple figures of speech.

In line one, alliterating is used. (Alliteration is the repetition of a consonant sound.) Line one is as follows:

When most I wink, then do mine eyes best see.

Here, the alliteration is seen with the repetition of the "w" sound.

Also in line one, Shakespeare uses assonance. Assonance is the repetition of a vowel sound.

When most I wink, then do mine eyes best see.

Here, the vowel sound "i" is repeated.

In line four, a paradox is seen. A paradox is "a statement that is apparently self-contradictory or absurd but really contains a possible truth." Therefore, the paradox in Sonnet 43 is as follows:

And darkly bright are bright in dark directed.

The paradox which exists is that something can be dark and bright at the same time. These two terms are simply contradictory to each other.

The line also contains alliteration. The repetition of both the "d" sound in "dark" and "darkly" and the repetition of the "b" in both "brights."

Another example of a paradox is seen in line eight:

When to unseeing eyes thy shade shines so!

One would not refer to eyes as not being able to see. This creates the paradox: eyes that cannot see.

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