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Discuss the representation of the beloved in "Whoso List to Hunt" by Thomas...

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livingheart | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 31, 2012 at 5:29 AM via web

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Discuss the representation of the beloved in "Whoso List to Hunt" by Thomas Wyatt.

I need to write about 600 words

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kiwi | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted November 14, 2012 at 11:16 PM (Answer #1)

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 In order to produce an essay of this length, I would suggest that you include the historical background to the poem as well as a close reading of the text.

 The word ‘ beloved’ is not used in the poem, so one would conclude that the term refers to the object of the chase, the ‘hind’, whose pursuit the narrator gives up on. Historically, this figure is believed to be Anne Boleyn. She was introduced to the court of Henry VIII and was rumoured to be close to Wyatt before becoming Henry’s wife.

The theme of the poem being the narrator’s renouncement of the pursuit of the quarry may be interpreted to show that the King himself was where Wyatt’s loyalty, and love, truly lay. If the narrator is perceived as giving up the quest for Boleyn out of love and respect for his monarch, then Henry VIII could be perceived as his ‘beloved’.

Within the close reading of the text, the symbol of the hind’s golden collar denoting ownership by Caesar implies that the narrator supports the assertion that Boleyn was already destined for a royal union. The comparison of Henry VIII with Caesar indicates the narrator’s deep sense of respect for his king. Subtly implied also, however, are the darker qualities of fear and domination which the Tudor monarchy held.

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